Every once in a while a television show comes along and takes the UK by storm.
In the past millions of people have tuned into the X Factor, Britain's Got Talent or The Apprentice to cheer on their favourite contestant. One recent television phenomenon has been The Great British Bake Off. Starring judges Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry and presented by Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins, the BBC One programme has gained somewhat of a cult following.
The latest series has seen viewing figures soar to over nine million with the British public simply unable to get enough of the baking contest. While the show has proved a huge hit for the BBC, new figures have shown that it has even had a positive effect on the home baking sector with a rise in sales attributed to the start of the fifth series.
Market analyst IRI stated that there has been a dip in sales of baking products during the first six months of 2014. Value sales were down 3.2 per cent and volume sales had also fallen by six per cent but this has recently changed. In the past two weeks, figures have begun to rise and this has been linked to the beginning of the latest series of The Great British Bake Off.
Tim Eales, IRI director of strategic insight, said: "There are clear signs of a link between sales of some home baking categories and the TV show The Great British Bake Off. Even while shoppers continue to cut back on how much they buy from the major supermarkets, they can't seem to resist the lure of baking goods at the start of the new TV series."
There was controversy in on the programme recently after contestant Diana Beard was blamed by some viewers for Iain Watters' elimination. Ms Beard was said to have sabotaged Mr Watters' Baked Alaska by leaving his ice cream out allowing it to melt. The 69-year-old subsequently left the show due to illness, with the BBC denying that it was due to controversy over the latest episode.