Consumers are buying more healthy biscuits and individual slices, amid the media debate on sugar, according to a market report. 

‘Healthier biscuits’ is the best-performing sector of the market, thanks to health-conscious buyers, said the 2014 Key Note Report on Cakes and Biscuits.

This included a surge in popularity for breakfast biscuits; in a survey conducted by Kantar Media between October 2012 and September 2013, as many as 2.3% of respondents consumed breakfast biscuits as often as once a week or more in the 12-month timeframe.

Healthier biscuits hold 23.3% of the biscuit sector, outperforming any other, representing an 8.2% increase from 2012. The sub sector was valued at £597m in 2013. 

Individual cakes represented 79% of the ambient cake market, with large cakes and pies taking a hit. 

The Key Note report stated: “Cake is widely considered to be less healthy than biscuits, and this is restricting growth among an increasingly health-conscious consumer base; although brands such as Weight Watchers do have a presence in this sector, it is much less established than with biscuits.”

Large cakes, pies and tarts saw a 3.1% decrease in value from 2012, and were worth £285m in 2013.

The report noted that there was a growing demand for convenience, as UK consumers increasingly saw biscuits and cakes as a snack for any occasion. It also predicted there was an opportunity for innovative new products in the reduced-fat and reduced-calorie ranges.