Carol Oldbury, Director of Hames Chocolates, said that while it’s hard to predict what 2021 has in store, one thing we are sure of, is that the popularity of chocolate will not diminish, which is good news for the country’s confectionery industry.
The Lincolnshire chocolate maker started 15 years ago as a family venture and supplies many well-known businesses and high street brands and describes itself as ‘possibly one of the biggest British chocolate companies you have never heard of’.
“Chocolate has been the go-to treat for people for nearly 200 hundred years and the one food many of us turn to, to cheer ourselves up – so it’s not surprising that sales of chocolate have grown since the beginning of the pandemic and are likely to continue to do so,” said Oldbury.
“As the UK’s biggest FMCG category and reaching 98.7% of British households in the past year, the opportunities in the chocolate industry are substantial.”
Hames Chocolates Top Five Predictions:
- Made in Britain: As a result of the ongoing pandemic and Brexit, we expect the British public to have an even stronger appetite for products manufactured completely in the UK, which is why this year we launched the Great British Chocolate range to maximise this trend. As our first British chocolate offering, it showcases everything that we are about - it’s delicious, sustainable and its strong branding shouts that it’s made in Great Britain
- Allergen-free: The trend for free-from foods including dairy free ‘milk’ chocolate continues to gain momentum and we envisage that 2021 will be no different. As a result, we are working to remove some of the allergens in our chocolate including dairy free ‘milk’ chocolate and chocolate made with sunflower lecithin rather than soya
- Plant-based: With the number of plant-based meals growing by +23% versus 2015, its clear the trend for plant-based food is thriving. With sales of our vegan chocolate on track to be up by nearly 35% in 2020 compared to the previous year, there is also a growing demand for plant-based chocolate
- Dark chocolate: We have seen a significant increase in sales of dark chocolate over the past 12 months and we predict this growth continuing in 2021.
- Personalised chocolate: We predict that personalised chocolates will be bigger than ever before in 2021. Whether that’s individuals wanting to send personalised gifts or businesses using this approach to target customers or thank colleagues. The lack of face-to-face contact, we think will drive this trend further next year.