It sticks to your shoes, clothes and desks, and is the bane of every street cleaning company, but last year Britons chewed their way through a massive £317 million worth of chewing gum, an increase of some 28% on 2001 figures, according to MINTEL. Today, it is sugar-free gum that is really growing the market, having well and truly replaced regular gum as the number one choice. Now making up some 76% of the sector, sales of sugar free varieties have grown an impressive 38% since 2001 as increased scrutiny from government and health watchdogs means gum containing sugar is no longer so readily promoted. Meanwhile, things are looking pretty sticky for regular gum as it now accounts for just 13% of the market and has seen sales fall by a significant 11% over the same period.

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