Morrisons last week announced it was following in the footsteps of retailers including Aldi, Lidl and Tesco and removing sweets from many of its checkouts.

But confectionery brands aren’t the only ones shifting promotional activity away from so-called ‘guilt lanes’.

Data from retail analysts Assosia shows seven of the 10 brands that make greatest use of featured promotional space in the big five supermarkets (see table) are using the till aisle less than a year ago.

Ironically, given that sugar concerns have driven much of the debate over ‘guilt lanes’, the biggest decline in use of till aisle space in percentage terms was by toothpaste brand Colgate. The till aisle accounted for 18.6% of its promotions in the four weeks to 13 September, compared with more than a third of deals a year ago.

Less of a surprise is that the three big confectionery brands are all running fewer till aisle offers. Such space accounted for 11% of Cadbury deals (down 5.3 percentage points year on year), 5.3% of Nestlé deals (down 4.4 points) and 15% of Mars deals (down 1.5 points).

Of the 10 biggest brands, the ones to make greater use of the till aisle were Kellogg’s, Birds Eye and - in news unlikely to please the anti-sugar brigade - Coca-Cola, which increased its total deals in all space by 17.1%.

Across total featured space activity, use of the till aisle fell 1.4 points to 17.3% of total deals, with use of the power aisle and foyer increasing. But the biggest switch was in favour of the back aisle - up 0.6 points to 24.9% of promotions.

“The promotional space in the back aisle, which is where the bakery sections are in most retailers, has not always been used entirely for offers,” says Assosia managing director Kay Staniland.

“However, with the reduction of activity at the front of store - at least for the time being - the retailers don’t want to incur the loss of revenue from removing the guilt lanes, and the brands want to be seen, so expanding or switching products at the back of store will help boost both retailers and brands.”