Walkers whisky mince pies target UK Xmas market

By Lorraine Heller

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Scotland Scotch whisky Uk

Leading Scottish shortbread manufacturer Walkers Shortbread last
week introduced its new whisky mince pies at the Anuga trade show
in Cologne. The company plans to launch the product in the UK for
the Christmas season.

Glenfiddich Mincemeat Tarts, which are due to hit the market next month, were created through a collaboration with William Grant & Sons, the makers of leading global malt whisky Glenfiddich. "The whisky distilleries in Scotland are ten minutes away from the Walkers factory. It was a natural development for us to use another locally produced product," said James Walker, the company's managing director and grandson of its original founder. Walkers Shortbread already manufactures a range of fruitcakes and plum puddings using Glenfiddich whisky, the latter of which was launched in June this year. "These are very gourmet products that tend to be sold in speciality stores as they are too expensive for the average supermarket. But they are selling very well and also have a good luxury gift appeal," Walker told BakeryAndSnacks.com. The new whisky mince pies will be priced at £2.50 for a box of six. The market for shortbread in the UK, valued at around £70m, is still relatively niche, making up about 5 per cent of the nation's total biscuit market. It has seen a "slow but steady" annual growth of 2-3 per cent in recent years, according to Walkers. The company, which said it has seen a sales increase of 5-6 per cent over the last few years, claims to hold around 50 per cent of the UK market for shortbread and 70 per cent of the total UK export market. The traditional Scottish product, which has become identified in the UK with the Walkers company, also performs well in other English speaking markets, such as the US and Canada. In continental European countries such as France and Germany the product is becoming increasingly popular, viewed as an imported speciality. Other players in the UK market that have this year launched shortbread products include Kate's Cakes and Honeybuns, according to Mintel's GNPD, which tracks product launches. The US and Canada have seen the introduction of a variety of shortbread and pecan products this year, including launches by Uprising Breads, Harrell Farms and Give & Go Prepared Foods. External links to companies or organisations mentioned in thisstory: Walkers Shortbread

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