/ Food & Drink

Has one of your favourite food products been discontinued?

discontinued products

Ever had a favourite food or drink that you enjoy regularly, only for it to disappear from the shelves? It’s not uncommon for companies to discontinue products with no explanation – which ones do you miss?

Some products aren’t built to last, but while our older tech will always get replaced by the latest and greatest innovations, it’s a little different for other product areas. In the case of food and drink, our personal favourites can sometimes disappear completely – often suddenly and without explanation.

Vanishing act

From ever since I can remember, my family has sat down for a roast dinner every Sunday. I’ve always looked forward to dessert most and every week, without fail, I would have a Heinz Strawberry Jam Sponge Pudding all to myself (yep, the whole lot… with ice cream). It also came in Chocolate, Spotted Dick and Treacle variations.

Then one week, it suddenly vanished. We couldn’t find it on the shelves anywhere, but remained confident that it’d return – maybe everywhere was just out of stock?

As months went by I gradually let go, but after last week’s roast dinner, I decided I needed confirmation that the puddings were gone forever, so I tweeted Heinz to find out.

Gone, but not forgotten

The confirmation from Heinz cut me like a knife through… sponge. But it got me reminiscing about some of my other old favourites that had suddenly disappeared without a trace.

Pepsi Lemon Twist – gone. Citrus Clear Lucozade – gone. Both childhood favourites of mine that I’d pick up on the way home from school on a regular basis.

When I mentioned I was writing a Convo on the subject of discontinued products at Which? HQ, many of my colleagues had one dearly departed food or drink product. Discontinued chocolate, such as Fox’s Echo bars, Mars Delight, Flake Snow and Cadbury’s Dream (the white chocolate Dairy Milk), were all brought up frequently.

Rob in our Digital team was still in mourning for Worcester Sauce Twiglets, but I think he’s on his own there.

Coincidentally, the most frequently mentioned discontinued product from the Which? staff I asked is another belonging to Heinz. Its Baked Beans Pizza with Cheese was a firm dinnertime favourite for many here, until it disappeared just like its sponge puddings.

Which discontinued products do you miss?

This is a subject we’ve covered here on Which? Conversation before, when the infamous Christmas favourite, the Toffee Deluxe, was ditched from the Quality Street selection. Many of you joined the conversation then to lament the end of Wrigley’s chewing gum, Nestlé Texan bar, Cadbury Milk Tray lime chocolate and many others.

Do you have a childhood favourite food or drink product that you can no longer get hold of, or perhaps one that has disappeared more recently? Whether it’s food, drink or something else, let us know about it in the comments below.

Heather Williams says:
17 March 2018

I miss Smedley’s Beef Steak & Kidney Pie.

Booja Booja Coconut Ice Cream.

A bit on the expensive side but was my favourite non-dairy ice cream. Booja Booja replaced several of their ice creams with far too sweet and sickly ones.

There are several out there but they seem to contain toasted coconut – hard chewy funny tasting bits that ruin the ice cream for me.

I wish someone would make a plain, really coconutty, not-too-sweet, non-dairy ice cream.

( P.S. Any manufacturers can contact me for a taste test through Which?)

I just remembered the other Booja Booja ice cream I miss, and that was their ginger ice cream.

Maria says:
18 March 2018

Aldi do one. £1.99. Alpro do too. Both quite sweet but still very moreish.

Thanks Maria, but they both contain carrageenan which we try and avoid.

Too many people fussy about what they eat , it is only food and there are similar foods available so why insist on having the same branded product as many do .Too many buy the brand not the food or anything else that has a branded popular name .If it has not a branded name they believe it is an inferior product

Some people are more sensitive to tastes and textures than others. If you enjoy something and it is suddenly no longer available, it’s natural that you’ll be disappointed.

Trouble is bishbut, when you have intolerances or allergies, you have to be fussy otherwise you can be very ill. I used to be able to eat almost anything but now have to be careful.

Milk gives me stomach ache and makes me bloated. I can eat or drink small quantities as in the odd coffee if I am out or a couple of spoonfuls of ice cream from the freezer, but any more and I feel downright uncomfortable that can last a few days. I love cheese and seem to handle the amount I eat okay. My husband is allergic to milk and if he consumes any at all, his throat constricts like a peanut allergy and that could be dangerous.

It took a long time for supermarkets to get on board with these types of foods but they have improved immensely and special diet products no longer disappear to make way for Xmas foods.

These types of products are not in great demand though, and very often don’t last long on the shelves although I can’t think of any examples at the moment.

Steamdrivenandy says:
17 March 2018

So many.
The one that still upsets me most is the ’90’s cutting of Imperial Leather Shower Gel when they brought in masses of other gels but stopped the standard one. Why, when even now they still sell the standard soap is beyond logic?
Then there’s M&S Belgian Chocolate Desserts, Strawberry Soda, the coffee chilled sweet with a chocolate coffee bean on top. Mint Cracknel, my favourite instant coffee, peppermint toothpaste, they’re all spearmint now, the list goes on and on.

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I agree with you about the exotic combinations that are dreamed up Duncan.

Although they didn’t like me as I am dairy intolerant, so could only eat them in very small quantities, I really liked Tesco Finest Stem Ginger and also their Salted Caramel ice creams.

But they have changed the ginger to Plum, Honey and Ginger and the salted caramel to Salted Caramel and Butterscotch. I won’t be trying them as they sound too sweet. So maybe Tesco have done me a favour, but they have ruined at least 2 very good ice creams.

Wherry says:
17 March 2018

What happened to Cremola????

ChrisC says:
17 March 2018

Yes, Rice Cremola was a firm favourite of mine and my late father.
I liked the Heinz tinned puddings too. I think it was Heinz who did cans of potato and vegetable salad too. Always useful to have in the cupboard on standby for a rare hot sunny day!
Call me weird but there used to be a curry flavoured version of Sandwich Spread that I miss, I added some curry powder to the normal one recently but it wasn’t so good.
Recently Tesco has discontinued its’ Rhubarb and Custard Ice Cream cones which is a real blow ☹️

I didn’t know what Cremola was so looked it up.

If you miss it, I noticed this recipe someone posted:
…… the following recipe provides an almost identical product:-
2 heaped tablespoons of Whitworth’s Semolina
1 tablespoon of custard powder
1.5 tablespoons of sugar
1 pint of milk.
Mix dry ingredients in bowl & gradually add milk. Pour into pan and stir continuously until hot and thick.

One of the most recent product withdrawals has been the excellent Taylor’s of Harrogate Espresso coffee. Second only to Illi coffee in taste, but reasonably priced.

Ribena Original has just been withdrawn. You may find a few bottles in shops still. The difference is doubtless due to the crusade against sugar – but a family member is allergic to one of the sweeteners ( acesulfame K and sucralose) they have replaced a lot of the sugar with. They have also added polydextrose. So her goto refreshing health drink is now unavailable.

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Heinz also upset me when the withdrew their Sundried Tomato Sauce – this really was ‘Med in a bottle’ – all gloopy and delicious! They wouldn’t listen to me either!

Why do the do gooders appear to win in this world all the time? Most of us are capable of making an informed decision about our own intake, it’s all about moderation and education. Ribena has been ruined by removing natural sugar and replacing it with man made sweeteners?

I find all juice drinks too sweet and dislike the taste of artificial sweeteners. I wish manufacturers would just cut down on the sugar instead of replacing it.

Maxwell House Mild blend coffee seems to have disappeared from supermarket shelves. It’s still available on the internet, one supplier offering 100g jars and others, 750g tins. The label on the tins is blue, though. Don’t know whether it is the same stuff as in the jars.

Maxwell House was the only coffee my mother would drink. The blue label was for granules & red for powder, IIRC. Up until recently, I could only buy the blue label jars in 1 shop in my area & haven’t seen the red one for years. (No longer need to buy it as Mum is in a care home now)

I miss Heinz Treacle sponge too, and I believe it was discontinued several years ago now.

I also miss Count Dracula ice lollies.

Andy says:
17 March 2018

BArmouth biscuits and Instant Whip(I dont li Angel Delight – far too creamy for me)

Used to love instant whip!

We once ate Barmouth biscuits in Barmouth – we had a phase of ‘honouring the origin’ on holidays – had eccles cakes in Eccles, bakewell tart in Bakewell etc

Butterscotch Instant Whip was my favourite as a kid and I also much preferred it to Angel Delight.

Should be Bakewell Pudding in Bakewell

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Canned clams. Come on John West, what are you playing at?

Pam.vince@nylworld.com says:
17 March 2018

We used to love Coleman’s mozerella and chicken pasta bake sachet which made a most child and adult friendly meal. It just disappeared off the shelves☹️

It has to be the peerless Abbey Crunch biscuit. Even Hobnobs don’t get close.


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Kate says:
17 March 2018

Abbey Crunch biscuits

Kunzl Cakes

Nicola says:
18 March 2018

We’re kunzl cakes the ones that came in like a chocolate shell?? Used to love these but every time I try to describe them to anyone they look at me like i’m mad!! You might have helped me solve something that’s been bugging me for over 20 years!!

I miss Vesta curries. I also miss the original Mars bar

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Pauline says:
20 March 2018

Mars brought out a special edition Mars bar in the 90s that was dark chocolate and nougat. They were delicious and I used to buy a box of 48 at a time.