Walking over the opposition

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Walkers crisps, Advertising, Coca-cola

Health concerns appear to take a back seat when it comes to British
snack habits: Walkers crisps was by far the biggest UK grocery
brand last year.

Walkers crisps were the top-selling brand in the UK last year, helped by the almost constant advertising of the brand featuring ex-footballer Gary Lineker.

According to the latest list of Britain's top grocery brands compiled by Marketing Magazine​, the snack brand's sales topped £245 million in 2002, a clear sign that Britain remains a nation of snackers despite the popularity of the Atkins Diet or fears over cancer-causing chemical acrylamide.

The list, which includes both food and non-food items, is one of contrasts. Walkers' popularity suggests that consumers remain broadly unconcerned about health concerns when it comes to snacking, but the same is not necessarily true when it comes to soft drinks: the third most popular brand was Diet Coke with sales of £200 million.

Like Walkers, which aired 25 commercials during the year, the magazine suggests that Diet Coke's growth of more than 20 per cent year-on-year has been due in no small part to its high profile advertising campaign - featuring Hollywood actress Kim Basinger - during the year.

The core Coca-Cola brand was number five in the list with sales of £190 million.

So what do most Britons eat with their bag of Walkers crisps and their can of Coke? A sandwich, of course. Three pre-packaged brands also made the top ten listing, according to Marketing Magazine: Hovis was at number four with sales of £195 million, up 12 per cent, while at six and seven are Kingsmill (six) and Warburtons (seven) had combined sales of £350 million.

Two other brands in the list show that this packed lunch is likely to be finished off with a Mullerlight yoghurt (at number 11) and a cup of Nescafé coffee (number nine).

The magazine also highlights the shift upmarket evidenced by a number of high profile brand launches during the year, such as Walkers Sensations, Maltesers ice cream and Nestlé double cream.

Related topics: Ingredients

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