Percy Pigs are undoubtedly one of the nation’s favourite sweets – but no one could have predicted the backlash Marks & Spencer faced for changing the recipe earlier this month
The store was been inundated with complaints from customers after changing the ingredients in the gummy candy to make them vegetarian. In fact, the response was so passionate that M&S was forced to take action, allowing a Percy Pig Panel of 100 ‘mega fans’ to vote on whether they should go back to the original formula, which was made with gelatine.
The retailer has now announced that as a result, they will be sticking to the vegetarian option which came out on top following the votes.
This is despite the fact that last week, disappointed shoppers likened the new vegetarian flavour to ‘washing-up liquid’ and dubbed the sweets ‘vile’, with many demanding for the original product to return to shelves.
@marksandspencer how can I register my feedback on the new Percy Pig recipe? I have enjoyed Percy Pigs for years but unfortunately will not be purchasing again – the flavour is frankly vile.
— Coleen (@ColeenJHP) April 30, 2019
This clearly needs a high level investigation… #PercyPigs have apparently all gone veggie, but some say they now taste like washing up liquid! As a big Percy fan, I’m concerned… ? pic.twitter.com/sbsaj2unLx
— Mark Carter (@MarkCarterMC) May 1, 2019
@marksandspencer Why do your percy pigs taste like washing up liquid and have such a strange texture? Really disappointed as they're basically inedible. It's been our favourite sweet for years
— Matt Jackson ??????? (@parappathrapper) April 23, 2019
@marksandspencer is it correct that percy pigs are all vegetarian?? What has happened to customer choice??
— Julie Smith (@Smithjulie_) May 1, 2019
‘Why do your Percy Pigs taste like washing up liquid and have such a strange texture? Really disappointed as they’re basically inedible. It’s been our favourite sweet for years,’ asked one commenter on Twitter.
Another agreed: ‘How can I register my feedback on the new Percy Pig recipe? I have enjoyed Percy Pigs for years but unfortunately will not be purchasing again – the flavour is frankly vile.’
M&S previously responded to several customers’ tweets saying that they’d ‘recently reviewed the recipe for Percy Pigs and have removed gelatine,’ but that their food team are closely monitoring the feedback.
The issue even became the subject of such a national debate that it appeared on the front page of newspapers, and even scored a segment on Good Morning Britain.
Host Piers Morgan blamed ‘snowflakes’ for the change, saying: ‘Seriously, go and get sweets that aren’t called Percy Pig.’
‘Go and get ones called Kale Nicies which taste disgusting but you can all feel happy because they’re made of kale. Leave our pig sweets alone you people.’
However, it’s not all bad news for M&S, as the store has also won plenty of praise from vegetarians who defend the decision to update the recipe.
Wait what?! People are actually angry that @marksandspencer ‘s original Percy Pigs have gone vegetarian? You’re telling me people want a gelatin made from pig’s and cow’s connective tissue, skin and bones in their sweets?! You people are crazy!!! ?
— Aloha Lola Cards (@AlohaLolaCards) April 30, 2019
i’m sorry but vegetarian percy pigs have always been superior and the fact that they’re all veggie now is the best news i’ve heard all week
— lau? (@laurenblss) May 1, 2019
‘I’m sorry but vegetarian Percy Pigs have always been superior and the fact that they’re all veggie now is the best news I’ve heard all week,’ wrote one.
‘Thanks for taking the animal out of Percy Pigs, @marksandspencer!’ added another. ‘I love your green ear Percys and I’m glad you’re taking the step to get rid of the gelatine completely.’
Whatever your stance, the people have voted and the veggie Percy Pigs are here to stay!