Waitrose and Fortnum & Mason have both bucked the downward trend in marmalade sales.

As other consumers turned away from the traditional breakfast spread in favour of honey and chocolate spreads - with sales down 5.8% by value and 6.8% by volume in the takehome market [Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 28 October] - shoppers at Waitrose bought 3.2% more marmalade by volume last year, while Fortnum & Mason said value sales had shot up 17.5%.

Waitrose attributed its 7.6% share of the marmalade market - well ahead of its 5% overall grocery share - to the breadth of its range. “Customers come to us to find unusual flavours of the preserve,” said Waitrose preserve buyer Jo Maclaine.

Fortnum & Mason also said it overtraded in marmalade. The Piccadilly-based grocer said the launch of two marmalades for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee - the Consort’s Marmalade with rose brandy and Majestic Marmalade with gold leaf - helped boost sales last year.

It added that it had built up a strong reputation for marmalades.

“Fortnum & Mason has become known as the destination for the most delicious, artisan and interesting marmalades among both British and international customers,” said Fortnum & Mason product developer Jonathan Miller.

Fortnum & Mason is the official sponsor of the Original Marmalade Awards, which takes place in Cumbria next week. It offers listings to the winner of the Double Gold Medal and some Gold Medal winners.