A New Regulation May Turn British Jam Into “Gloopy Sludge”

First it was wine, and now jam is under threat. Is nothing sacred?

Liberal Democrat MP Tessa Munt has said that if a proposed sugar regulation in the U.K. go forward, British jam could end up like “gloopy sludge” – adding it would be more like European fruit spread which tastes “like mud.”

If passed, the new rule would allow jam producers to call their fruit spreads “jam” even if they only contain half the amount of sugar. Business Secretary Vince Cable has argued that rules dating back to the 1920s say that a fruit spread can only be called a jam it has at least 60% sugar to “retain its gel-like quality.”

Defra minister George Eustice has said part of the rule change is part of a European Union “jam directive” and that it allowed but did not require the sugar level of jam to be lower than 60% to be set.

Tessa Munt, however, is outraged that fruit spread will just be able to pass itself off as a jam with only 50% sugar, cooly adding that the change would simply be the “end of the British breakfast as we know it” and would “destroy the characteristic quality of British jams.”

Tessa Munt continued, saying:

“If the total sugar percentage is reduced, the characteristic gel in the consistency of jams, jellies and marmalades will be lost, and the result will be a homogenised, spreadable sludge, bearing no resemblance to the product we know and enjoy in England as British jam.”

Twitter was not nearly as outraged as Munt, but still reasonably upset and confused:

Scott Andrews


Defra. You are wrong. Let jam be jam. And not become a fruit spread with the name of jam! http://t.co/K5LeRYdzFu

/ Via

i love Big Clem So M


“Oh hot Damn, that’s my Jam!” I say, wrestling with notorious thief Hot Damn as he tries to rob me of my precious fruit spread.

/ Via

The 60% sugar jam thing? Is that 60% added sugar? My homemade jam is usually half sugar to fruit or it's far too sweet.

— Kate K (@EssexKate)

Kate K


The 60% sugar jam thing? Is that 60% added sugar? My homemade jam is usually half sugar to fruit or it’s far too sweet.

/ Via

It’s fair to say that for Tessa Munt, fruit spread is simply not her jam.

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