Sales of Supermaket Bacon Soar

As Britain gears up to celebrate the first ever British Bacon Education Week (19-25 February) Sainsbury's, a supporter of the event, has reported soaring sales figures in its Taste the Difference Dry Cured bacon range.

Manufacturers, Cranswick Country Foods, uses the traditional dry curing process for The Taste the Difference bacon range.

Guy Hooper, sausage and bacon buyer at Sainsbury's said: "Since we launched these products 18 months ago sales have more than tripled and we've recently added outdoor reared and organic bacon to our range with encouraging sales, we have very high hopes for the future."

Chris Battle is a director of Cranswick Gourmet Bacon and son in law of the late Yorkshire butcher, Jack Scaife, whose recipe is still used today to make the bacon.

Battle said: "We are so proud of our British dry cured bacon and its 100 year old heritage, I have ensured that my family's traditional curing process is unchanged. We used to sell it in our shop and then over the internet by mail order, now it's available in Sainsbury's it gives everyone the chance to taste this great British product at its best."

Hooper said: "Cranswick and Sainsbury's have a relationship which spans more than 20 years. We worked together to change the perception of British sausages over 10 years ago and we've seen a revolution in the variation and quality of products, now we want to do the same thing with bacon."

Figures from TNS Super Panel reveal that premium British bacon has experienced a rise in popularity recently with the total bacon market worth £197.9m in the 12 week period ending 31 December 2006, up 6.4% year on year. Super premium bacon accounted for £16.67m of this figure, with Sainsbury's Taste The Difference Dry Cured bacon range alone having a 14.5% share of this market, worth £4.41m and enjoying an increase of 21.9% year on year.