Easter egg

In my family, Easter is simply treated as a time to purchase vast quantities of chocolate at an appealing discount.

Always a budget-conscious group, the Cleavers nevertheless have chocolate needs that must be fulfilled, and Easter is the time of year when the rest of the nation’s appetite for chocolate finally coincides with ours.

Cadbury alone has launched 431 Easter promos, according to research by Assosia. 431! Across the board, the average Easter egg promo totals a 32% saving. It’s enough to make you stock up on chocolate for the rest of the year.

Easter is a weird enough holiday as it is. Recent research from Mintel suggests more people spend money on Easter products (68%) than invest in relevant products on Mother’s Day (64%), Valentine’s Day (55%), or Halloween (43%).

Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day are meant to involve your strong feelings for other people. British consumers, though, apparently aren’t so concerned about their feelings for other people as they are about the local shop’s gigantic pile of chocolate eggs, especially when they come with extra chocolate bars.

This could be, in fact, the sole time of the year when 2015 Brits forget their fear of sugar and wholeheartedly embrace the demonised ingredient, with Mintel reporting only 28% of consumers are put off their Easter eggs by the thought of high sugar content.

Can you imagine what would happen if the government brought in a special tax on Easter eggs to discourage the widespread consumption of unhealthy sugar? The entire government would be recalled. They wouldn’t make it through Lent.

At the same time, we know consumer concern about sugar more generally is growing. So why the sugar blindness when it comes to Easter eggs? Well, for a start, no one’s under any false impressions about Easter eggs. There’s no way a person devouring stacks of Easter eggs can’t be aware of the high sugar content in their seasonal feast. The sugar content of other products isn’t always as obvious to consumers.

Furthermore, there aren’t many other options. While consumers are intrigued by the idea of low-sugar chocolate (44% say they would be interested in trying it), only 25% have actually tried it, say Mintel. So as sugar awareness grows, could we soon see a healthy Easter aisle? Low-sugar chocolate, low-fat simnel cake? (Yes, simnel cake. The Cleavers are a traditional bunch.)

For now, Easter eggs are an obvious (and much-cherished) treat. But sugar-conscious consumers might also be sticking to their eggs simply because they just can’t see any other options for their Easter chocolate fix. It’s a golden egg waiting to be laid.