Nut and seed sales are expected to hit record levels this year boosted by trends towards healthy eating, research by Mintel has found.

Sales of nuts, seeds and dried fruits will pass the £500m mark by the end of the year, with 50% growth since 2001, Mintel estimated.

“The market has successfully met the nation's demands for exciting and more adventurous snacks, and the ever increasing range of nuts and mixed nuts available has appealed to a wide variety of different people,” said senior market analyst Harry Foster.