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Snacking Motivations and Attitudes - US - January 2019

"95% of US adults snack daily, and 70% do so 2+ times per day, making snacking a huge opportunity for connecting with consumers. The percentage of “super snackers” (those who snack 4+ times per day) is increasing, and the fact that busy lifestyles result in the skipping of meals (or replacing meals with snacks) suggests snack frequency will continue to grow in the near term. Snacks are planned, and are as likely sought to satisfy hunger as they are to satisfy cravings. Consumers want indulgence and health, sometimes at the same time, meaning brands that can provide a hint of both or ways to tap into both mood states can flourish."
- Beth Bloom, Associate Director - Food & Drink

This report looks at the following areas:

  • Snack frequency increasing
  • Consumers say they want healthy snacks, but flavor remains important
  • Expanding boundaries challenge snack brands, provide opportunity for all food/drink players

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
      • Executive Summary

        • The issues
          • Snack frequency increasing
            • Figure 1: Snacking frequency, January 2015 and November 2018
          • Consumers say they want healthy snacks, but flavor remains important
            • Figure 2: Snack attitudes -- Health, November 2018
          • Expanding boundaries challenge snack brands, provide opportunity for all food/drink players
            • The opportunities
              • Fun and function are on par for snackers
                • Figure 3: Snack motivations, November 2018
              • Flavor rules snack choice, but value has a strong impact on purchase
                • Figure 4: Snack purchase drivers, November 2018
              • All snack categories are experiencing sales growth
                • Figure 5: Percentage growth in select snack categories, 2012-17
              • What it means
              • The Market – What You Need to Know

                • Aging population shifts the call for age-specific snacks
                  • Wellness for the masses
                    • Americans are stressed, and stress eating
                      • Time is money, and there’s not enough of it
                      • Market Factors

                        • Aging population shifts the call for age-specific snacks
                          • Figure 6: Population by age, 2013-23
                        • Consumers focused on wellness, seek guidance
                          • Figure 7: Current health goals, August 2018
                        • Americans are stressed, and stress eating
                          • Figure 8: Health concerns, by age, November 2018
                        • Time is money and there’s not enough of it
                          • Figure 9: Snack motivations – Busy, by age, November 2018
                        • Snacks across category see sales growth
                        • Market Perspective

                          • All snack categories are experiencing sales growth, some stronger than others
                            • Salty snacks maintain momentum
                              • Dips and savory spreads continue steady growth
                                • Dollar sales of bars grow 20% from 2012-17; slower growth projected through 2022
                                  • Slower sales, yet signs of recovery for nuts, seeds, and trail mix
                                    • Modest, mostly steady growth for chocolate confectionery
                                      • Chips on track for continued modest growth
                                        • Non-chocolate confectionery sales grow 13% from 2012-17
                                          • Frozen snacks recover from a bumpy few years, challenged by growing snack options
                                            • Crackers need repositioning to remain competitve
                                              • Figure 10: Percentage growth in select snack categories, 2012-17
                                          • Key Players – What You Need to Know

                                            • Good value and good taste provide a winning snack combination
                                              • Snackers will continue to push the snack boundaries even further
                                                • The future is fresh
                                                  • The next generation of convenience
                                                  • What’s Working?

                                                    • Good value and good taste provide a winning (vital?) snack combination
                                                    • What’s Struggling?

                                                      • Nuts imply health, but struggle with value
                                                      • What’s Next?

                                                        • Expanding boundaries challenge snack brands, provide opportunity for all food/drink players
                                                          • Figure 11: “Afternoon Snack Breaks,” October 2018
                                                        • The future is fresh
                                                          • Figure 12: Healthy snack attributes, May 2018
                                                        • Convenience redefined
                                                        • The Consumer – What You Need to Know

                                                          • Majority of consumers snack 2-3 times per day
                                                            • Snackers are planning their snacks
                                                              • Fun and function are on par for snackers
                                                                • Snackers want their hunger satisfied
                                                                  • Snack habits don’t scream health, but shifts are seen
                                                                    • Supermarkets continue to lead for snack purchase
                                                                    • Snacking Frequency

                                                                      • Majority of consumers snack 2-3 times per day
                                                                        • Figure 13: Snacking frequency, November 2018
                                                                      • Snack frequency increasing
                                                                        • Figure 14: Snacking frequency, January 2015 and November 2018
                                                                        • Figure 15: Snack behavior – Change, November 2018
                                                                      • Men make up the largest share of super snackers
                                                                        • Figure 16: Share of snacking, by gender, November 2018
                                                                      • Half of super snackers are under age 35
                                                                        • Figure 17: Share of snacking, by age, November 2018
                                                                        • Figure 18: Snack behavior - change, by age, November 2018
                                                                      • Parents are strong targets for frequent snacking
                                                                        • Figure 19: Snacking frequency – CHAID – Tree output, November 2018
                                                                        • Figure 20: Snacking frequency – CHAID – Table output, November 2018
                                                                    • Reasons for Snacking

                                                                      • Fun and function are on par for snackers
                                                                        • Figure 21: Snack motivations, November 2018
                                                                      • Younger shoppers are more likely to see snacks as functional
                                                                        • Figure 22: Snack motivations, by age, November 2018
                                                                      • Consumers view snacks as helping maintain focus
                                                                        • Figure 23: Snack attitudes - focus, November 2018
                                                                    • Snack Choice Drivers

                                                                      • Flavor rules snack choice
                                                                        • Figure 24: Snack purchase drivers, November 2018
                                                                      • Women are more calorie conscious
                                                                        • Figure 25: Snack purchase drivers, by gender, November 2018
                                                                      • Moms are the most price conscious
                                                                        • Figure 26: Snack purchase drivers, by parental status, November 2018
                                                                      • Affordability is key for younger snackers
                                                                        • Figure 27: Snack purchase drivers, by age, November 2018
                                                                      • Lower earning HHs are not as reliant on health-focused snack attributes
                                                                        • Figure 28: Snack purchase drivers, by HH income, November 2018
                                                                      • Nutritional features appeal to Asian snackers
                                                                        • Figure 29: Snack purchase drivers, by age, November 2018
                                                                    • Snack Occasions

                                                                      • Snackers are planning their snacks
                                                                        • Figure 30: Snack behavior – Unplanned, November 2018
                                                                      • 18-24s remain impulse snackers
                                                                        • Figure 31: Snack behavior – unplanned, by age, November 2018
                                                                      • Snackers from higher earning HHs are most likely to plan snacks
                                                                        • Figure 32: Snack behavior – unplanned, by HH income, November 2018
                                                                      • The morning snack occasion should not be overlooked
                                                                        • Figure 33: Snack attribute by occasion*, November 2018
                                                                      • Two thirds of snackers replace meals with snacks
                                                                        • Figure 34: Snack attribute by occasion* – Meal replacement, November 2018
                                                                      • Home and work are most popular locations for snacking
                                                                      • Snacking Attributes

                                                                        • Snackers want their hunger satisfied
                                                                          • Figure 35: Snack attribute by occasion – Any occasion, November 2018
                                                                        • Portable, energizing, fruit-based snacks are sought for morning snacking
                                                                          • Figure 36: Correspondence analysis – Symmetrical map – Snack attributes by occasion, November 2018
                                                                          • Figure 37: Snack attributes by occasion, November 2018
                                                                        • Young snackers value satiety, energy, and affordability
                                                                          • Figure 38: Snack attribute by occasion – Any occasion, by age, November 2018
                                                                        • Hispanic snackers lean toward health, Black snackers drawn to indulgence
                                                                          • Figure 39: Snack attribute by occasion – Any occasion, by Hispanic origin, November 2018
                                                                          • Figure 40: Snack attribute by occasion – Any occasion, by race, November 2018
                                                                        • Portability is important to super snackers
                                                                          • Figure 41: Snack attribute by occasion – Any occasion, by snacking frequency, November 2018
                                                                      • Types of Snacks Consumed

                                                                        • Snack habits don’t scream health, but shifts are seen
                                                                          • Figure 42: Snack behavior – Health, November 2018
                                                                        • Parents aren’t instilling healthy snack habits in their children
                                                                          • Figure 43: Snack behavior – Kids, November 2018
                                                                        • Younger snackers are least likely to exhibit health behaviors
                                                                          • Figure 44: Snack behavior – Health, by age, November 2018
                                                                        • Snack choices are largely driven by convenience and satisfaction
                                                                            • Figure 45: Snack diary, November 2018
                                                                        • Ideal Snack

                                                                          • Consumers say they want healthy snacks, but flavor remains important
                                                                            • Figure 46: Snack attitudes – Health, November 2018
                                                                          • Flavor and convenience are key
                                                                            • Figure 47: Snack attitudes -- Preferences, November 2018
                                                                        • Snack Purchase Location

                                                                          • Supermarkets continue to lead for snack purchase
                                                                            • Figure 48: Snack purchase location, November 2018
                                                                          • …but mass merchandisers are closing in for primary purchase
                                                                            • Figure 49: Snack purchase location – Most often purchase, March 2017 and November 2018
                                                                          • Super snackers are most likely to buy at mass
                                                                            • Figure 50: Snack purchase location – Most often purchase, by snacking frequency, November 2018
                                                                          • Age and income play strong roles in purchase location
                                                                            • Figure 51: Snack purchase location – Any purchase (Net*), by age, November 2018
                                                                            • Figure 52: Snack purchase location – Any purchase (Net*), by HH income, November 2018
                                                                          • Mass locations are key for moms
                                                                            • Figure 53: Snack purchase location – Any purchase (Net*), by parental status, November 2018
                                                                          • More than one in 10 super snackers use online services
                                                                            • Figure 54: Snack purchase location – Any purchase (Net*), by snacking frequency, November 2018
                                                                          • Online channels are slow to catch on in the snack space
                                                                          • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                            • Data sources
                                                                              • Consumer survey data
                                                                                • CHAID methodology
                                                                                  • Correspondence analysis methodology
                                                                                    • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                                      • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                        • Abbreviations

                                                                                        Snacking Motivations and Attitudes - US - January 2019

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