Nestlé cuts 30% sugar in Rowntree’s gummy and chewy candy

By Douglas Yu

- Last updated on GMT

Nestlé plans to reduce sugar in its UK confectionery range by 10% by 2018.  Photo: Nestlé UK
Nestlé plans to reduce sugar in its UK confectionery range by 10% by 2018. Photo: Nestlé UK

Related tags Sugar confectionery market Confectionery Candy

Nestlé has launched 30% reduced sugar versions of two of its best-selling Rowntree’s products: Fruit Pastilles and Randoms.

The products, both come in sharing pouches and single packs, will be available in Tesco stores across the UK in April, 2017. Major retailers will also start selling them in July this year.

The product launch came shortly after the candy maker pledged to remove 7,500 metric tons of sugars in its UK confectionery​ range through reformulation, calorie limits and new technology, this site previously reported.

This commitment is part of Nestlé’s promise to cut sugar content in products across all categories globally by 5% by 2020, and to reduce sugar in its UK confectionery range by 10% by 2018.

Using maize fiber as sugar replacement

A spokesperson from Nestlé UK told ConfectioneryNews that there is 55.9 g of sugar per 100 g of sweets in Fruit Pastilles, and 53.1 g of sugar per 100 g of sweets in Randoms before the sugar cut.

“When sugar is removed from confectionery you need to replace it with something else that continues to deliver taste and texture consumers prefer. It would be easy for us to make products that don’t taste as good just to deliver nutritional improvements,”​ Nestlé said.

The company said its reduced sugar versions will stay true to Rowntree’s “no artificial”​ ethos with an element of the sugar being replaced with maize fiber, which is a natural ingredient.

Source: Nestlé UK

“We have worked incredibly hard to create these brand new versions of our favorite sweets,”​ the spokesperson added.

“The team at Rowntree’s factory have spent months tweaking, tasting and testing more than 76 versions of the recipes to create two new products to make sure that what we have ended up with is just as fruity and delicious as the full sugar products.”

Pastilles, gums, jellies and chews to gain share

A recent Euromonitor report showed that pastilles, gums, jellies, and chews is the dominant product category in UK’s sugar confectionery market, accounting for 54% of overall retail volume sales in 2016.

Price competition was particularly strong in the category, which saw marginal value unit price decline in the past year, the market research firm pointed out.

“Rowntree’s Randoms sharing pouch for example offered 25% extra volume free as a limited time promotion in this area in 2016.”

Pastilles, gums, jellies and chews will continue to see by far the most new launches with strong marketing support, Euromonitor added. The category will continue to gain market share in the future, “edging up closer to 72% value share [in UK’s sugar confectionery category].”

Euromonitor’s data indicated Rowntree is the second largest brand in terms of market share in the pastilles, gums, jellies and chews category in the UK, with Haribo being the top brand.

In addition, the market shares of Mondelēz’s Maynard’s and Bassett’s brands along with Mars’ Skittles, Cloetta’s Chewits and Perfetti Van Melle’s Fruit-tella are ranked third, fifth, fourth, sixth and ninth respectively in UK’s sugar confectionery market. 

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