Glisten Confectionery is the latest sweets manufacturer to clean up its act in a bid to appeal to more mothers and children.

All of its Victoria brand share bags - including Dolly Mixtures, Midget Gems, Jelly Babies and Kids Mix - have been given a makeover to take out artificial colours, flavourings and hydrogenated vegetable fats. The message is displayed in a 'free-from' flash on the front of bags, while packaging has also been revamped to make it more colourful, using cartoon-style characters.

"By improving the recipes and designs of the Victoria children's range we have ensured these traditional favourites will continue to be popular," said brand manager Sue Graydon.

Other confectionery brands are also making similar healthy moves, including Chewits and Haribo. Bon Bon Buddies is now only using natural colours and flavours, while it has featured characters from High School Musical and Pirates of the Caribbean on its Fun Buddy Surprise Bags.