A 2016 report by foodservice research company, Technomic, revealed that Americans are snacking more every year. Whether in-between meals or as a meal replacement, 83 percent of us report that we enjoy snack foods on a regular basis. As our lives get busier, the need for convenient, on-the-go snack foods is set to increase. Projections anticipate that the healthy snack industry will grow to 25.4 billion dollars by the year 2020.
AN EVOLVING INDUSTRY OF SNACKS:
What’s more interesting is that the practice of snacking isn’t just increasing, it’s evolving. As consumers grow more health-conscious they are actively seeking out fresh and healthy snack products as opposed to artificially flavored and sugar-laden processed foods. Trends in healthy convenience items include hummus and vegetables, yogurt, jerky, nuts and fruit cups.
SNACKS RISING IN POPULARITY:
Consumers also prefer snacks that are portable, small portions and ideal for tackling hunger. Protein-packed jerky, nuts and low-fat dairy products all seem to fit the bill. These nutrient dense foods are experiencing rising sales over the past few years.
The last piece of the evolving snack landscape is flavor trends. Research shows that consumers are partial to new flavor combinations and that we enjoy trying new things when snacking. FoodNavigator-USA.com reports flavors that will trend in 2017 will have various unique combinations including hot/sweet, hot/sour and umami flavors.
THE MICRO MARKET LANDSCAPE AND SNACKS:
Evolving snack trends are challenging manufacturers to come up with new ways to fulfill the need for fresh and healthy snacks that satisfy the masses. One solution for distribution is the micro market. They are set up like a mini-grocery store to provide fresh food and drinks that range from small snacks to full meals. Micro markets include a self-pay kiosk, making it convenient for the consumer to grab a snack, pay and move on with their day.
Be on the lookout for these flavor combinations arriving soon to tempt the taste buds of our nation of snackers, and especially in micro markets.
Want to learn more about snacks and getting a micro market at your office? Get started here.