As we continue to see more consumers shift away from the traditional diet approach of eating 3 square meals each day, snack food sales have really taken off in the U.S., with consumers looking for convenient, functional snack options that are better suited for their busy schedules. And while snack food sales in every category are up across the board, the savory snacks category has seen considerable growth over the past few years.
When it comes to making decisions about which snacks to buy, 73% of consumers cite taste as their primary deciding factor, and there’s no taste more sought after than the salty, cheesy, and spicy attributes of savory snacks. With American consumers looking for healthier snack options, however, food manufacturers have had to get creative with their savory snack offerings. With products like roasted jalapeño nutrition bars hitting store shelves, brands are winning over health-conscious consumers by adding their favorite savory flavors to nutritious, functional snack foods.
Still not convinced you need to “spice-up” your nutritious snack offerings? Check out these 15 facts about savory snack foods:
- Sweet and savory snacks, including chips, cookies, snack bars, and nuts, generated $42 billion in U.S. sales in 2014 (source)
- More than 90% of U.S. households report eating a salty snack in the past 30 days (source)
- Between 2008-2014, savory snacks were the third-fastest growing category in the snack industry behind snack bars and yogurt (source)
- U.S. consumers have increased their snacking frequency by 47% over the past five years, from 1.9 snacks per day in 2009 to 2.8 snacks per day in 2014 (source)
- 51% of U.S. consumers report consuming 3 or more snacks per day (source)
- 84% of North American consumers eat snacks to satisfy hunger between meals, while 66% also eat snacks to provide nutrition (source)
- Lunch is the most popular meal to be replaced with snacks, with 51% of North American consumers doing so (source)
- 48% percent of North American consumers have used snacks as a meal replacement for breakfast in the past month (source)
- 53% of consumers try to eat foods that help prevent or manage health challenges, and 45% seek snacks that offer benefits beyond basic nutrition (source)
- 31% of consumers say protein is a “very important” attribute when deciding which snacks to eat (source)
- 6% of all U.S. food and beverage launches made “high-protein” claims between March 2013 and March 2014 (source)
- Snack foods making high-protein claims saw a 49% increase over the past year (source)
- 85% of Americans find healthy snacking difficult, with half of the respondents attributing the problem to not finding a balance between goodness and flavor (source)
- 65% of consumers say they like trying new snack products (source)
- 42% of American consumers say they could commit to adding one healthy snack into their diet each day (source)
How about now? Did those help change your mind?
For food manufacturers looking to create more functional savory snack foods, our Industry Insights whitepaper will tell you all about the latest snack food trends, as well as provide a first-hand look at how Grande WPCrisp® can be used to add a high-quality protein boost to your savory snack food applications.
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