UK snacks maker United Biscuits is to launch its plain chocolate digestive biscuits in Italy, aimed at the popular breakfast market.

United Biscuits launched its McVitie's Plain Digestives in Italy some years ago, taking advantage of the fact that biscuits are often consumed for breakfast in Italy.

Following extensive market research, the company now plans to launch a plain chocolate version aimed at the younger end of the market and for snacking occasions. If the plain chocolate biscuits are successful in Italy, the milk chocolate version will be rolled out in two years' time, the company said.

The company was granted a £20,000 (US$37,670) Enterprise Award for this activity by the HGCA (Home Grown Cereals Authority), which promotes the use of UK-grown cereals. Over the next two years sales of McVitie's chocolate digestives in Italy are expected to result in an additional 1075 tonnes of UK grain being used.