As British Sandwich Week nears, the nation's favourite filling is revealed

British Sandwich Week which, organised by the British Sandwich and Food to Go Association, takes place between May 22 and 28.
British Sandwich Week takes place this year between  May 22 and 28British Sandwich Week takes place this year between  May 22 and 28
British Sandwich Week takes place this year between May 22 and 28

The sandwich we know and love today was created in 1762 in England. Most food historians agree that the sandwich is the product of John Montagu, the 4th Earl of Sandwich.

Montagu was known for being a problematic gambler, spending hours upon hours at the card table.

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The British Sandwich Association defines a sandwich as: any form of bread with a filling, generally assembled cold – to include traditional wedge sandwiches, as well as filled rolls, baguettes, pitta, bloomers, wraps and bagels.

Sandwich statistics

1 More than 3,000,000,000 sandwiches are purchased from UK retail or catering outlets each year.

2 We spend over £8,000,000,000 a year on sandwiches.

3 The average price of a sandwich is £2.14.

4 Britain’s biggest sandwich retailer by value in the UK is the American franchise chain Subway which has shot ahead of the UK’s biggest retailers, including Tesco, Greggs and Marks & Spencers, in the sandwich stakes in the value of the sandwiches they sell.

5 In the UK there are over 300,000 people employed in the sandwich industry.

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6 According to data from Kantar, bacon came out as the top sandwich filling 2017-2018.

7 The first ‘packaged’ sandwich is believed to have been launched by Marks & Spencer in 1985 thanks to the creation of an ‘easy seal’ pack by Hans Blokmann, the then technical director of packaging supplier Danisco Otto Nielsen.

8 Chicken remains the most popular filling in commercially made sandwiches accounting for around 31% of all sandwiches.

9 Britons eat some 43,000 tonnes of chicken in sandwiches each year. That’s the same weight as 258 Blue Whales or 6,006 double-decker busses.

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​10 Sarnies are triangles right? – Wrong. More than half of all commercially bought sandwiches are made with traditional square sandwich bread.

11 Wraps account for five percent of all sandwich sales in major retailers. The big new thing with wraps has been the hot wrap, with a number of new products being launched.

12 Panini sandwiches are also gaining in popularity – last year their sales rose by 14 percent in major retailers, although they still only account for around two percent of sandwich sales.

13 Baguettes are also popular accounting for around 10% of commercially made sandwiches.

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14 There is much debate as to what constitutes a sandwich but burgers and other associate products are not considered to be a sandwich

​ As the crowning of King Charles III approaches, it’s on May 6, Coronation chicken is the favourite of the moment.

Wa rburtons r esearch revealed the top seven sandwiches are :

1 Cheese

2 Ham and cheese

3 Ham salad

4 Sausage

5 Ploughman’s

6 Egg and cress

7 Tuna mayonnaise

While peanut butter and jam may be a favourite for our cousins across the pond, it featured bottom of the list with.

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Research also found that 25 per cent of Brits will change their sandwich-eating habits depending on the occasion.

While not on the list, bacon is the top filling – sauce optional – in our house. My favourite – and it’s not to everybody’s taste – is cheese, jam and pickled onion.

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