Print
Amer­i­cans have a seri­ous love affair with snack­ing. Those of a cer­tain age might still define a snack as a quick mid­day grab for a Snick­ers bar or bag of potato chips.

Tra­di­tional daily eat­ing pat­terns are built around three “square and struc­tured” meals. Snacks were sup­ple­men­tal to those three squares.

This behav­ior is yield­ing to more mod­ern eat­ing styles char­ac­ter­ized by fre­quent snack­ing. These snack­ing events occur in a more unsys­tem­atic way and varies from per­son to per­son.

Snack­ing used to be about diver­sion, fun and indulging in food crav­ings. There is a shift toward health, well­ness, fresh and pre­mium snack foods.

Plea­sure is still a com­po­nent to snack­ing, but so are nour­ish­ment, opti­miza­tion and convenience.

Today’s snacks have become the replace­ment for tra­di­tional meals– a fruit smoothie instead of break­fast, pro­tein bar in place of lunch and a lighter, shared antipasto plate in lieu of din­ner.

Eat­ing pat­terns and what to eat when choices are linked to the ever chang­ing rhythms and demands of daily life. There is still a req­ui­site oblig­a­tion to take care of fam­ily needs. Over busy work and activ­ity sched­ules con­tribute to what we eat when part.

Health­ier snack options are start­ing to address tim­ing and con­ve­nience. The food indus­try as a whole has responded to the desire for fresh and min­i­mally processed food and bev­er­ages.

That goes for retail gro­cers, food ser­vice oper­a­tors and online ordering/​delivery sites. There is a pro­lif­er­a­tion of pre­mium qual­ity ingre­di­ents and brands com­pet­ing for snack food atten­tion.

There is an increased demand for clean, organic, all-​natural and plant-​based options and foods that fit spe­cific diets. Ethics, med­ical con­di­tions or food intol­er­ances and aller­gies fuel this demand.

Mil­len­ni­als, in par­tic­u­lar, hold their snacks to a higher stan­dard com­pared to other con­sumer groups. They may con­sume four or five healthy snacks in the course of a day, rather than sit down meals.

This gives porta­bil­ity and func­tion­al­ity a lot of cre­dence. Tech­nol­ogy savvy and glob­ally aware, this group of con­sumers knows how to find the ingre­di­ents or loca­tion for pre­cisely what they want to eat in the moment.

Dig­i­tal shop­ping, curb­side pickup and office or home deliv­ery con­tend to fill the snack holes. Sweet or salty, crunchy or smooth– fla­vor, qual­ity and fresh­ness dic­tate today’s snacks.

To read the full Mar­ket Report, includ­ing this week’s mar­ket update, see below or click here.

Market Report page 1

Market Report page 2

Market Report page 3

Market Report page 4