Heineken plans to lower the abv of the former Scottish & Newcastle white cider brand White Lightning in the UK.

From 1 May, the brand, described by Heineken's UK unit, Scottish & Newcastle UK, as "functional alcohol" will have an abv of 5.5% from its current abv of 7.5%.

The cider will continue to be offered in 2-litre bottles and 440ml cans and there will be no change to price or duty.

S&NUK's off-trade sales managing director, Mark Gerken, said: "It's important to do the right, responsible thing. We hope other white cider manufacturers will follow.

"We are not scrapping the brand because we want to see if there is interest in white cider. We will have one crack at changing the category.

"If lowering the abv is not successful, we will not put it back up to 7.5%," Gerken added.