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Once just staple student fodder, the humble baked bean has undergone something of a makeover and the market is now really hotting up. Latest research from MINTEL shows that sales have increased by a saucy 11% over the last two years alone, with Brits forking out almost £300 million (£295 million) on their beloved beans last year. “The latest shift towards healthy eating and cooking fresh food could have relegated baked beans to the back of the kitchen cupboard, but instead manufacturers have used these trends to their advantage,” comments Vivianne Ihekuweazu, senior consumer analyst at MINTEL. “The introduction of more upmarket recipes as well as new varieties that are better for you, means that even after all these years, baked beans are still a regular fixture at mealtimes across the UK. “