McVitie’s Cut Sugar Without Compromising Taste Or ‘Dunkability’

McVitie’s has reduced sugar in nine of the nation’s favourite biscuits by up to 10%, without compromising on taste or ‘dunkability’, thanks to ‘a breakthrough in sugar reduction’.

The new, reformulated McVitie’s Original Digestives contain 9% less sugar and 5% less salt, but still retain the same unique sweet and savoury taste combination. Previously, at just 16.6g of sugar per 100g, McVitie’s Original Digestives were already one of the lowest-sugar biscuits available, coming in at well below Public Health England’s target of 26.2g of sugar per 100g – but now they contain just 15.1g of sugar per 100g.

McVitie’s ‘superfans’, to prove that the reduction in sugar could not be tasted, tested the new-recipe biscuits and a mechanical dunking arm was set up in a testing lab, to ensure that dunking was not affected

McVitie'sThe change, the culmination of a series of nutritional improvements that have been implemented by pladis across its product range, will remove 785 tonnes of sugar from Brits’ diets every year.

The reformulated biscuits include McVitie’s Original Digestives, McVitie’s Rich Tea, McVitie’s Chocolate Digestives (Milk and Dark), McVitie’s Original Hobnobs, McVitie’s Chocolate Hobnobs (Milk and Dark), McVitie’s Caramel Digestives and McVitie’s Ginger Nuts, which make up over 50% of all McVitie’s sales in the UK1.

Other changes are as follows:

  • Rich Tea biscuits now contain just 18.5g of sugar per 100g
  • Original Hobnobs now contain 22.9g of sugar per 100g
  • Milk Chocolate Digestives now contain 28.5g sugar per 100g
  • Dark Chocolate Digestives now contain just 26.6g sugar per 100g.

“For years, we have been working on reducing sugar in the nation’s favourite biscuits”, David Murray, Managing Director of pladis UK & Ireland, said. “It’s an exceptionally complex process, because our fundamental philosophy is that we will absolutely not compromise on taste or the quality of ingredients.

“99.1% of all households in the UK buy biscuits and McVitie’s continues to be the number one biscuit brand in the UK, so we know that if we are to truly help the nation lead healthier lives, we need to take sugar out of our biggest-selling biscuits. However, we have an incredibly loyal fan base that has grown up eating our biscuits, so if they no longer liked the taste, then the whole programme would fail.

Dr Alison Tedstone,
David Murray

“By testing our new lower-sugar biscuits with hundreds of consumers to ensure that they cannot tell the difference, and by implementing a process of careful rebalancing of ingredients, we have reduced sugar and salt while maintaining the unique sweet and savoury taste combination that makes our biscuits so distinctive.”

Dr Alison Tedstone, Chief Nutritionist at Public Health England, said: “We’re pleased that McVitie’s is the latest household name to commit to offering healthier products.

“This announcement shows reducing sugar in biscuits is possible and we look forward to seeing further reductions in the future.”

Currently, 96% of pladis’ products sold in the UK & Ireland contain 200 calories or less per recommended serving, where two biscuits typically equal one serving*. pladis has also introduced new lower sugar snacks including McVitie’s Digestives Twists, McVitie’s Granola Oat Bakes and go ahead! Nutty Crunch.


* Not in our house they don’t! (Ed.)

There’s more on pladis on Planet Vending, HERE

About the author

The Editor

Planet Vending’s Editor is Ian Reynolds-Young and it’s Ian’s unique writing talent that has made PV what it is today – the best read (red) vending blog in the world, and vending’s best read (reed). Ian ‘tripped and fell into vending’, in the capacity of PR executive, before launching a specialist agency, ‘reynoldscopy’, dedicated to the UK Vending business. The company continues to represent the interests of many of the sector’s leading brands.

‘It’s all about telling stories’, he says. ‘We want to make every visit to PV a rewarding experience. By celebrating the achievements of the UK’s operating companies, we’re on a mission to debunk the idea that vending is retailing’s poor relation.’

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