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People Are Stockpiling IRN-BRU As The Sugar Tax Looms

People Are Stockpiling IRN-BRU As The Sugar Tax Looms

Consumers are stockpiling Irn Bru before the Sugar Tax sees a permanent recipe change and less sugar in the drink

Claire Reid

Claire Reid

A staple of early morning school bus journeys and Saturday morning hangovers, Irn Bru has played a key role in British history since its introduction in 1901.

However, AG Barr, the company which produces the drink, is about to permanently reduce the amount of sugar in the Donald Trump-coloured beverage.

As a result, consumers are stockpiling cans of Irn Bru before the recipe disappears.


Speaking to The Scottish Sun, personal trainer (yup) Alan Clark, 44, from Glasgow, said: "I'll get a few cases to put away for future. It would be good if they kept making the original too - I'd pay the extra. I'll try the new one."

Another person who spoke to the paper was Stephen McLeod Blythe, a lawyer who uses his time to run the "Save Real Irn-Bru" campaign. He predicted Barr would eventually reverse its decision, saying: "I suspect this change has come as a misguided response to declining fizzy drinks sales overall. It will eventually be reversed."

Speaking to LADbible, Irn-Bru fan Luke McFarline said: "Its a national tragedy. Scotland is the only country in the developed world where Coca Cola isn't the number one fizzy drink. Now Iron [sic] Bru is bending the knee to a demand none of it consumers want. Shameful."

Larder Smack Photo

A.G. Barr is changing its recipe in large part because of the looming Sugar Tax. Announced in March 2016, the levy will "tax the soft drinks industry for total sugar content over 5g per 100ml and apply to drinks such as Coke, Red Bull and Irn Bru," according to

"It is estimated to raise around £520 million a year, which will be spent on increasing funding sport in primary schools."

Speaking to LADbible, a spokesperson from A.G. Barr said: "From January 2018 IRN-BRU will continue to be made using the same secret IRN-BRU flavour essence, but with less sugar. The vast majority of our drinkers want to consume less sugar so that's what we're now offering.

"We know that our loyal drinkers love IRN-BRU for its unique great taste and we've worked hard to deliver this.

"We ran lots of taste tests that showed most people can't tell the difference - 9 out of 10 regular IRN-BRU drinkers told us we had a good or excellent taste match.

"IRN-BRU will remain a sugary drink as the sugar in a can will reduce from 8.5 teaspoons to 4. A can of IRN-BRU today has just under 140 calories and in the future will have around 65 calories.

"Most shoppers can expect to buy IRN-BRU with reduced sugar from later this month. Give it a try when it comes out!"

Personally, I think the only way to test whether Irn-Bru lives up to its already high standards is whether it passes the Saturday-morning-post-tequila test.

Watch. This. Space.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: Food, UK News, Health