Marmite sprouts? Why retailers push festive food bounds

Many readers will find the thought of Christmas tree-flavoured crisps revolting, but Iceland is betting its clients will feel the opposite this festive season.

The crisps are part of the supermarket chain’s festive food scope, and have a distinct pine-like savor thanks to their pine salt spice, which is induced with pine tree oil.

It is part of a wider trend for fiction, sometimes bizarre fusion foods that has swept the UK over the last few years as retailers vie for our attention and our cash.

But some have questioned whether the trend has gone too far, with newspapers calling Iceland’s crisps “dubious” and customers taunting them on social media.

Image caption Anyone for tea? Brussels buds tea?

Iceland says the crisps offer a “completely new combination, unlike any other festive flavour”, but shoppers I speak to outside a branch in Clapham, south London are divided.

“It savors a bit organic, various kinds of herby. They have a good perfume and feel kind of Christmassy, ” says Rory.

He likes the fact Iceland is catering to niche savours and would potentially buy the crisp, although another shopper Martin is unconvinced.

“It tastes a little bit earthy, like clay I guess. It’s pretty unpleasant, ” he says. “To me it stands out as a bit of a gimmick, it’s simply cashing in ahead of Christmas.”

Image caption Martin thinks Iceland’s new crisps are “pretty unpleasant”

Other experimental Christmas foods on sale in recent seasons have included Brussels sprouts-flavoured tea( containing granulated sprouts) from Sainsbury’s, Christmas pudding smoothies from M& S and turkey breast-infused gin from Portobello Road Gin.

Have we reached ‘peak’ advent calendar ? Brits get Christmas shopping done early Is September too early to think about Christmas ? Marmite sprouts( Iceland ): in this simple recipe the festive vegetable is coated in a Marmite butter in this simple recipe the festive vegetable is coated in a Marmite butter Mince pie croissants( cafe chain Paul ): flaky all-butter croissants, fitted with sweet mincemeat and dusted with icing sugar flaky all-butter croissants, fitted with sweet mincemeat and dusted with icing sugar Christmas pudding gammon( Aldi ): sweet cured gammon with a fruit-filled stuffing and rich “mince pie glaze”, topped with edible gold lustre sweet cured gammon with a fruit-filled stuffing and rich “mince pie glaze”, topped with edible gold lustre Battered Brussels buds( Poppie’s Soho ): has participated in newspaper-style wrapping has participated in newspaper-style wrapping Winter berries and prosecco crisp( M& S ): flavoured with dried prosecco, raspberry juice and ocean salt Image caption Asda’s Christmas dinner pizza: the new and improved version Image caption Aldi’s Christmas pudding gammon – an acquired savour, perhaps … Image caption Robbie Bargh says Christmas sandwiches work well

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