Despite the popularity of low-carb diets and the rise of food allergies and intolerances – especially to gluten and wheat – consumers across Scotland, England and Wales are thirty times more likely to choose a sandwich than a salad when eating out of home.
• Baguettes are Brits’ Favourite Sandwich
• North Wales, Northern England are healthiest regions
• Scots consume the most drinks on the go
• Southerners are the most discerning
The findings come during British Sandwich Week 2015 from Planglow, a leading labelling and eco packaging provider to the ‘grab and go’ food industry, and is based on the sales of more than 20million of its packaging products over the past twelve months*. So while Planglow estimates that just 2.8% of grab and go choices are comprised of salads, nearly one in three (31%) are filled French sticks. What’s more, consumers look to have become increasingly discerning with 18% of sandwiches and wraps ‘made to order’ while just 7.2% of sandwiches are made with a longer shelf life (up to 72 hours).
Rachael Sawtell, Planglow’s marketing director commented, “We know sandwiches – especially baguettes – have been a favourite for some time though we were surprised at how significantly the French stick now dominates the grab and go market given the perceived preference for healthier choices. And while more nutritional and allergen information is being displayed on food and drink packaging than ever before, our sales suggest consumers still favour the sandwich when it comes to eating on the go”.
Providers across North Wales and Northern England were arguably the healthiest of all regions enjoying the highest volume of salads (4% of total products sold in the area) and reduced filling (standard-fill) wedges (5%).
South Wales and the West of England were the biggest fans of baguettes overall (29% of total products sold in the area) but the least likely to have their sandwich made to order (2.9%) or consume a beverage out of home (6%). North Wales plus the North, East and West of England, also favoured baguettes over all other to-go-options.
Scots consumed the most beverages out of home (cups accounted for 27% of food and drink packaging sold across the region) and premade deep-fill wedges were their lunch of choice with one in five (20%) products sold packaging a deep-fill item. One in ten items sold were for longer life sandwiches making Scots the biggest consumers of products with a longer shelf life and 8% of items were for pre-made wraps making Scotland the lowest consumer of wrap products.
Providers in the East of England served the fewest buffets and longer life sandwiches (3% each) but dished out the most pots with one in 14 meals being enjoyed from a pot.
Southerner’s consumed the most made to order items comprising a quarter of all goods sold in the region, but ate the least salads – less than 2% of grab and go sold in the area.
Despite being beaten to the number one spot by baguettes, the classic ‘deep-fill’ triangular cut sandwich maintains a strong edge in the ‘grab and go’ market with one in four sandwich products being produced in this way. While ‘standard-fill’ wedges – which tend to be offered as more economical or reduced calorie options – comprise just 3.3% of all sandwich sales. And pre-made wraps – also perceived as a lower carb option – account for a similarly small bite of the market (3.6%). Planglow also found that every 22nd snack eaten on the go is from a pot – soup, porridge, desserts and so on – while just 0.4% is part of a buffet.
Sawtell commented, “Last December the government introduced new legislation that requires all food providers to declare allergens to consumers – most commonly on pack. Providers are also being encouraged to add Reference Intakes (RIs) to their labelling in place of the old GDA (Guideline Daily Allowance) ‘traffic light’ system. While similar to GDA’s, the government has adjusted the criteria for what constitutes as low, medium and high levels of energy and nutrients (fat, saturates, sugars and salt) in our foods to support an even healthier lifestyle.
“The new guidelines will take time to fully bed-in however, we believe most consumers are still choosing fuller-filled bread-heavy options in spite of this. What’s more, better labelling may also be highlighting that some perceived ‘healthy’ options – such as heavily dressed salads or salads containing a lot of pasta or cheese – are not always as low in calories, fat, sugar and so on as the consumer may like and sandwiches are often a healthier choice”.
*1st April 2014 – 31st March 2015
With nearly 30 years industry experience, Planglow is a recognised market-leader for both the supply and bespoke design of branded labels, food safety labels and compostable packaging to the catering industry.
Planglow’s pioneering software LabelLogic and NutriLogic are simple but effective programs that enable users to label products quickly, efficiently and stylishly, as well as with nutritional information – if they so desire – remaining fully compliant with labelling legislation at all times.
Planglow supply products to caterers of all sizes, from independent cafés right through to multi-site contract caterers, and everything in between. The company currently offers more than 400 product lines including sandwich and salad packaging, bio cups and pots, lids, bags, menus, and labels.