Mackie’s Crisps uses 'secret' production gear to produce vegan popped chips

Mackie’s Crisps is to ramp up production of its healthy snack brand Wholesums in Scotland after investing in secret production equipment.

Wholesums is now available in four flavours, Salt of the Earth, Splash of Salt and Vinegar, Whole Lot of Smokey BBQ and Softly Sweet Chilli.

The vegetable chip range, which was launched last year by the Taylor family behind Mackie’s Crisps, is made thanks to an innovative slow baking process that, unlike rival “popped” snacks, is able to incorporate up to 45 per cent whole fresh vegetables.

A £750,000 investment in a new production facility in Errol, Perthshire, includes the installation of technology developed for over a year by the firm, which has vowed to keep the process top secret.

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The snacks are now available in four flavours, “Salt of the Earth”, “Splash of Salt and Vinegar”, “Whole Lot of Smokey BBQ” and “Softly Sweet Chilli”. They are naturally vegan as well as being gluten and dairy free.

James and Sally Taylor of Mackie's Crisps, the Scottish snack brand. Picture: John Summers Photography

By using whole peas, carrots and potatoes, unlike competitors which use flours and powders, the snacks are said to be high in fibre, with just 1.2 per cent fat as a result of using next to no oil.

Managing director James Taylor said: “Being able to make Wholesums on a larger scale at the farm is a big breakthrough for us.

“We’ve invested time and money in the brand because we want to create a healthy snack brand and product that is a meaningful improvement on what is currently available – both nutritionally and in flavour.

“In our view Wholesums has achieved that. More and more of us want to eat healthily, but we don’t want to forego a tasty snack.

“Health is the dominating trend in the snacking market – but we also know that customers want to know that the brands they trust are acting sustainably.”

He added: “By using whole, often ‘wonky’ vegetables from local producers we’ll be able to massively cut food miles, while ensuring delicious food doesn’t go to waste.

“We’re just at the start of our journey too. The potential that our process and new equipment offers is huge and we’re looking at a range of options, including on behalf of some of our supermarket clients.”

Taylor is the fourth generation to work at the family farm – which since 2009 has produced Mackie’s Crisps as part of a joint-venture with Mackie’s of Scotland, the Aberdeenshire ice cream brand.

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