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Snacking is Back: US Consumers Indulge in Treats

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Snacking on popcorn

A recent Mintel report looked at snacking trends in the United States, along with some of the top reasons people are opting more for quick eats.

Indulge in the Sweet Things

The report indicated that the frequency at which someone snacks has risen in recent years, increasing from 50 percent of US consumers in 2015 to 55 percent in 2017. Among the leaders in the snacking uptick are millennials who are much more likely to snack opposed to Gen Xers and Baby Boomers.

The report also indicated that the main reason why people snack is a way to treat themselves. Additionally, 28 percent of snackers are mostly concerned on how a snack tastes. However, the fastest growing segment of the snack industry is products with health-related claims. In 2017, 45 percent of new launches included claims of low, no or reduced claims, an increase of 15 percent from 2013.

“Capitalizing on the snack craze goes beyond the traditional food categories that are commonly recognized for snacking,” stated Beth Bloom, associate director of US Food and Drink Reports at Mintel. “One snack type does not necessarily fit all, highlighting an opportunity for brands to grow adoption in the snack market by creating products that align with the differing snack preferences throughout the day, as well as by positioning products as a good choice for snacking.”

Quick and Ready Goes Global

Though the report only indicates the US market, there has been a global shift in the snacking market with new markets emerging. Among one of the leaders is the Asia-Pacific region where the processed meat, poultry and fish industry has seen an increase due to a shift towards ready-to-eat foods.

In addition to the growth, innovative flavors and products have been entering the market, boosting popularity and reach. From sweet soups to non-traditional candy flavors, the snacking category continues to become more diverse.