► Sustainability

We’re proud to produce great tasting products by affordable British brands that consumers love and enjoy as part of a healthy, balanced diet. Healthy eating is a key consumer trend and a top priority within our brand innovation programme. As one of the UK’s largest food manufacturers, with a presence in around 94% of UK households, we believe we have a responsibility to encourage the nation to make healthier food choices, and we believe it is important to empower them with knowledge and a variety of healthier options.

Our ESG strategy identifies which of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs) we can have an impact on:

Alignment to UN SDGs

As one of the UK’s largest food manufacturers, with a presence in around 94% of UK households, we believe we have a responsibility to encourage the nation to make healthier food choices.

That’s why we’ve made it a core pillar of our responsibility strategy and set ourselves ambitious KPIs to ensure we deliver on our commitment.

Our KPIs

Extend our range of healthier choices:
  • By 2025, every core range will include at least one better-for-you option (for example: reduced/ no added sugar, reduced salt, low in fat, low in calories, a wholegrain alternative to white, or free from key allergens).
  • From 2019, introduce at least one new range each year that enables consumers to improve their diet by eating more vegetables, protein or fibre, or delivering products that are fortified for greater nutrition.

Enhance the nutrition profile of our existing core range:
  • Continue to work with Government to implement the Childhood Obesity Plan and reformulation programmes (targeting salt, sugar and calorie reductions).

Educate our consumers and colleagues on the nutrition choices they are making to encourage healthier eating:
  • Continue to use clear and transparent labelling across our portfolio to help consumers easily understand their nutrition choices.
  • Extend our Healthy Eating in the Workplace programme across all our sites by 2021.

Extend our range of healthier choices

To encourage our consumers to make healthier choices, we believe it is important to empower them with knowledge and a variety of healthier options. We innovate to offer alternative better-for-you and healthier options to our consumers' cupboard favourites.

Better-for-you Options

Click to

Better-for-you variants are defined by having claimable nutrient benefits, for example a 30% or more reduction in sugar, fat or calories, or a 25% or more reduction in salt/sodium. These nutrition claims are carefully regulated: consumers can therefore be confident that by choosing better-foryou options, the products are not only healthier than the original variant, but also healthier than similar alternatives available on the market. Over the past year, we have launched two new products in two core ranges which did not already have a better-for-you (BFY) option. This means that 84% of our core ranges offer at least one better-for-you alternative to our consumers, which puts us well on track to achieve our 2025 target of 100%. In total, we have launched 17 new BFY options this year, including 15 across ranges which already offered a better-for-you alternative, such as Mr Kipling 30% sugar reduced Viennese Whirls, Bisto Cheese Sauce 25% salt reduced, Sharwood’s Butter Chicken 30% fat reduced and three variants of Sharwood’s stir fry sauces 30% sugar reduced. We have therefore increased our number of BFY options by 29% this year.

More Vegetables, fibres, and proteins

Click to

Every year, we want to offer a new range of products that enables our consumers to improve their diets by adding more vegetables and different sources of fibre and/or proteins. We also aim to support the increasing number of consumers switching to a flexitarian, vegetarian or plant-based diet, by adapting the recipes of our trusted brands to meet these modern consumer trends. This year, we have introduced the Batchelors “Filled with Goodness” protein soup range, and Sharwood’s vegetable side dishes delivering 1 of your 5 a Day.

We had already launched PLANTASTIC, an entirely new brand that uses plant-based recipes and offers on-the-go healthy snack options for consumers moving to a flexitarian, vegetarian or vegan diet, or those consumers simply wishing to enjoy a great tasting healthy snack.


Enhance the nutrition profile of our existing core range

Working with Government and Public Health England (PHE), we are committed to enhancing the nutrition profile of our core range, including reducing the sugar or salt content.

Sugar Reduction

Click to

We continue to reformulate many of our products to lower their sugar content and have removed 1,102 tonnes of sugar (compared to our 2015 baseline). For example, in the last four years, we have carried out stealth sugar reduction of between four and 10%, across 14 of our most popular products across our Sweet Treats business without compromising on quality and taste. Examples include a circa 10% sugar reduction in our core Mr Kipling Deep Filled Mince and Apple Pies or a 30% sugar reduction in our Ambrosia light custard and light rice pudding recipes across all formats.

Salt Reduction

Click to

Having already removed 1,000 tonnes of salt from our portfolio since the first set of salt targets were published, we are continuing this work in all of our New Product Development (NPD) programmes which are all meeting PHE’s 2017 salt targets for their respective categories. Following the publication of the new 2024 salt targets last September, we have now assessed all our categories and products to understand what further salt reduction is required. We have updated our internal Nutrition Guidelines according to the new targets, which will be reflected in our innovation pipelines as we continue to take salt out of our recipes.

Calorie Reduction

Click to

Calories continue to be a popular way for consumers to measure and plan their diet, so we are proud to say that all of our cake and dessert products meet the PHE calorie caps set out in their sugar reduction programme. Furthermore, our reduced-sugar cake slices contain only 100 calories per slice, which is in line with PHE’s recommended energy (calories) level for a snack.


Educate our customers and colleagues on their nutrition choices

We believe knowledge and understanding are key to empowering our customers and colleagues to make healthier choices.

Transparent Nutrition Labelling

Click to

We continue to champion transparent nutrition labelling so that consumers can make informed choices about the products they buy. As one of the first food manufacturers to adopt the voluntary front-of-pack traffic light labelling, we went on to support the Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD) in developing best practice guidance to encourage consistency across industry and better consumer understanding of the nutrition information provided in these labels. 95% of our UK portfolio carries all five key pieces of nutrition data – energy, fat, saturates, sugars, salt – on the front of pack (the remaining 5% only carry the energy information due to the small size of the packaging). This labelling helps our consumers to make informed choices.

We continue to work with other stakeholders on collaborative action to drive healthier diets and partner with our customers to promote and highlight our healthier alternatives to nudge our consumers towards those options and encourage behaviour change. This year, we have joined the Consumer Goods Forum’s Collaboration for Healthier Lives UK and look forward to playing a meaningful role within this forum which brings together manufacturers and retailers alongside key local stakeholders (including public health authorities, academics, local actors and government figures) to drive change and positively impact consumer health. Collectively, the forum aims to develop a series of structural and behavioural interventions – both in-store and through digital channels – to help our consumers and employees understand, find and choose healthier options.

Eat Wise, Work Wise

Click to

To encourage our colleagues to make healthier choices, we partnered with the IGD during the development of their Eat Wise, Work Wise programme. This programme aims to enhance healthy eating in the workplace by inspiring changes in personal diets. We have now assessed all our sites with canteens and have rolled out healthier menu options across half, with a goal to extend to every Premier Foods location with on-site canteens by the end of 2021.

By working closely with our catering provider, we have introduced a deli bar in our St Albans head office café, which includes a selection of fresh homemade salads that balance ingredients across the food groups – i.e. carbs, protein and fibre. We also offer a ‘goodness’ range, which changes daily to create added interest and is low in fat, salt and sugar. All food on offer also carries clear nutritional labelling, so that our colleagues can make informed choices.


Our case studies


A healthier version of your favourite takeaway

Our healthier Sharwood’s Indian range

Last year, 54% of UK consumers surveyed for our Kitchen Cooking Index have tried their hand at a ‘fakeaway’, recreating the eating out dining experience from their own kitchens.

With our Sharwood’s curry sauces, our consumers can enjoy the taste of Indian flavours with a healthier recipe than those from restaurants. Indeed, our research has found that a home-made curry using our reduced fat Sharwood’s curry sauce has a significantly better nutritional profile than an equivalent takeaway curry.

The saturated fat content in a takeaway option is on average three times higher than our Sharwood’s better-for-you 30% reduced fat Korma sauce, and it contains on average 60% more calories.

This year, we have added the 30% reduced fat butter chicken cooking sauce to our portfolio of better-for-you Sharwood’s sauces – helping our consumers in search of flavour, variety and healthier options!

Better-for-you cake

Reduced sugar Mr Kipling slices

Our approach to sugar reduction is two-fold. One approach is to remove sugar from our products, without compromising on their taste and quality, and the other is to develop better-for-you ‘reduced sugar’ versions of existing products, by way of providing consumer choice.

In 2019 our sugar reduction programme saw us achieve our ambition to remove 1,000 tonnes of sugar from our portfolio against a 2015 baseline. In the same year, we developed a 30% reduced sugar version of our best-selling Mr Kipling cake slices range – the market’s first ever better-for-you version of an established cake brand!

The range launched with a 30% reduced sugar version of our famous Angel Slices, containing just 6.1g sugar and 100 calories per 24g slice, compared with 13.1g sugar and 139 calories in our original 33g slice. We achieved this through sugar reduction in both the cake batter and the mallow, and by replacing the layer of icing that traditionally tops the cake with icing decoration.

Having proved popular with consumers, the range has since been extended to include 30% reduced sugar version of the brand’s Chocolate and Lemon slices. Each individual cake slice across all three variants contains 100 calories or less, in line with Public Health England’s portion recommendation.

Both our original and reduced sugar versions also come in our handy snack pack format, which not only provides convenience for consumers on the go but also helps them manage their portion and calorie intake.

Pure Plant Power...

Introducing Plantastic

Tapping into the increasing numbers of health-conscious consumers moving towards a flexitarian diet, we’ve developed a fresh new brand, Plantastic, designed to offer a range of delicious, convenient, plant-based foods across multiple categories. The brand was launched in Autumn 2019 with our range of flapjacks and cakes in four modern flavour combinations - Lemon and Tumeric, Apricot and Ginger, Orange and Parsnip and Cherry and Chocolate. They all contain a source of fibre and provide a nutritious on-the-go snack.

Following on from their success in market, the brand has expanded into the chiller aisle in 2020 with the launch of our Strawberry Mixed Grain Snack Pots; healthy mixed grains in a coconut cream with a Strawberry fruit layer, for a snack that provides a source of protein and is low in fat.

Consumers can also pick up a delicious Plantastic snack front-of-store, providing the ultimate healthy on-the-go snack option!

Salt Reduction

Taking salt out of our portfolio

Our approach to salt reduction is two-fold. One approach is to remove salt from our products, without compromising on their taste and quality, and the other is to develop better-for-you ‘low salt’ versions of existing products, by way of providing consumer choice.

We have actively engaged with the Government’s salt reduction programme since its launch in 2006, removing 1,000 tonnes of salt from our portfolio since that time, and achieving full compliance with their salt targets for Breads, Ready Meals, Soup, Noodles & Pasta, Flavoured Rice, Sponge Puddings, Stocks and Gravies. Specific examples of this work include a 12% salt reduction in our bestselling Loyd Grossman Basil and Tomato cooking sauce, a 9% salt reduction in our popular Oxo Vegetable Stock Cubes, and between a 13-26% salt reduction across three of our Bisto Best Gravy Granules products.

We’ve also introduced low salt versions of some of our most popular ranges, including Bisto Gravy Granules, Oxo Stock Cubes, and most recently a low salt version of our SAXA salt brand, aptly named So-Low, and containing 50% less sodium than table salt.

Vitamin D in Ambrosia

Fortified Custard and Rice Pudding

In 2014, we launched our Ambrosia Mini Pots range - delicious pots of custard and rice pudding, specially formulated for young children with calcium and added vitamin D.

Getting a good balance of all nutrients, vitamins and minerals is important to overall health, with calcium and vitamin D being vital for growth and development in young children. Often called the ‘sunshine vitamin’, Vitamin D is produced by our bodies when the skin is exposed to sunlight. However, in the winter when the sun’s rays are not strong enough, we need to get extra vitamin D from our diet.

Bringing together calcium from dairy goodness and added vitamin D, our Ambrosia mini pots help support strong bones, and come in convenient small pot sizes suitable for younger appetites.

Homepride Extra Veg

Veg packed pasta bakes

In 2016 we launched a tasty new range of Extra Veg Pasta Bake sauces from Homepride, designed to help parents improve their children’s diet through eating more vegetables and in turn increasing their fibre and nutrient intake. Each of the sauces in the range include 80g of ‘hidden’ veg per serving, the equivalent of ‘one of your five a day’.

Available in 3 delicious variants including Tomato, Courgette & Pepper and Creamy Tomato, Mushroom and Spinach, the range also has no added sugar.