UK sarnie market still in growth

The UK sandwich market has grown in value by 2% in the past year, with the number of sandwiches sold up by 6%, according to data released last Friday (16 May) by the British Sandwich Association (BSA).

According to the BSA’s figures, the total UK sandwich market was worth £7.25bn for the year to 2 May 2014 with around 3.5 billion sandwiches sold during the period.

Sandwich bars (such as Munch Sandwich Bar in Chelmsford, Essex [illustrated]) accounted for 32% of the market, while staff canteens made up 13%, coffee shops 11% and multiple supermarkets 10%, said the BSA.

The average shopper buys just over one sandwich a week (55.1 per annum), but the figure is higher in in Scotland (60.4 per annum) and West Midlands (60.3). In the South West the average consumer has just 32.4 sandwiches per year – preferring, perhaps not unnaturally, other savoury snacks such as pasties.

Over a third (36.1%) of sandwich trips also feature a hot beverage, but a strong over-index for cakes and pastries (24.8%) gives a surprising insight into wider eating habits – just 3% of sandwich eaters snack on chocolate while a mere 0.4% have sugary confectionery.

The top filling was chicken (31%) followed by cheese (13%) and ham (11%), while bacon accounted for just 5% of sandwich fillings (suggesting that this classic sandwich is primarily made and consumed at home).

Square sandwich bread is still the favourite carrier in front with 57%, while rolls and baps have 24% of the market are wraps have 5%.

On average, a sandwich costs £2.07 at retail and commercial sandwiches account for some 25% of the market.

The figures were published at the end of 2014’s British Sandwich Week and the launch of a free-to-download new smartphone app www.lovesarnies.com , which helps consumers find their nearest sandwich bars and enter competitions.

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