Mars, the UK’s second-biggest will introduce three vegan versions of its Galaxy bar to the UK next week.
The chocolate bars, which have been certified by the Vegan society, are made from hazelnut paste and rice syrup rather than dairy. They come in orange, caramel and sea salt, and caramelised hazelnut flavours.
Each 100g bar will be sold for £3 – double the price of the regular Galaxy – online and in Tesco, Ocado and Amazon stores from 18 November.
Kerry Cavanaugh, marketing director at Mars Wrigley UK, told FoodBev: “We’re so excited to be bringing these delicious treats to Galaxy’s range, using a vegan recipe that doesn’t compromise on the brand’s signature smooth and creamy characteristics.”
Vegan sweets and chocolate are currently only worth £10m in a £4bn confectionery market, but by introducing Galaxy, the UK’s second-biggest confectionery brand, “there is a huge opportunity for the category to grow”, Cavanaugh added.
Abigail Stevens, trademark marketing manager at the Vegan Society, told FoodBev: “We are delighted that Galaxy, such a well-known brand, is entering the vegan market and offering more choice.”
Tamal Ray, food writer at the Guardian, has already tried the new chocolate bars. He described them as “smooth on the tongue and melt away to a pleasant creaminess”, but said none taste “particularly chocolatey”. However, they are “about a million times better than Hershey’s” he added.
Linda Lopez, head of the sensory team at Mars said the vegan bars scored well in their blind taste tests. Customers rated them highly against several dark chocolates, which are vegan unless sweetened with milk or cream.