Threading salty-but-healthy is key to appeal to consumers, market report says

By Adi Menayang contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Snack foods, United states, Potato

Photo: iStock
Photo: iStock
A recent report by Packaged Facts found that the consumption of salty snacks in US households has grown slightly faster than population levels.

By comparing and analysing multiple sales and consumer data from IRI, SPINS, and Experian Simmons, Packaged Facts found that 95% of American households stock their pantry with salty snacks, as reported in its 4th​ Annual Salty Snacks in the U.S.​ report.

Potato chips are the most common type of salty snack, found in 23.7% of US households, second in popularity only to ice cream and sherbet,” ​the report said.

Economically, growth in sales of salty snacks in the U.S. overall has been steady. The report revealed that sales increased 3.5% to reach $22 billion in 2015. The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for salty snack sales in the U.S. between 2010 and 2015 was 3.7%.

More high-volume salty snack consumption

The report also said that heavy use of snacks, which means consumers having eaten eight or more bags in the last 30 days, has increased faster than average over the last decade.

“All four categories of salty snacks with trend data in Simmons (potato chips, tortilla/corn chips & corn snacks, popcorn, and pretzels) show better growth rates, with the real star being potato chips,”​ the report said.

“Heavy potato chip consumption by household rose by 10.5% between 2005 and 2015,”​ it continued. “What this means is that the number of households with highvolume potato chip consumption rose from 23.1 million in 2005 to 37.5 million in 2015, a growth of 62.5% over the period.”


As health consciousness penetrates more consumers via the blogosphere and social media outlets like Instagram and Pinetrest, Packaged Facts reported that marketers have been “quick to develop new products and modify the ingredients of existing products to keep salty snacks relevant even in the discussion of healthier-for-you snacks. “

“This quick uptake of an important trend, coupled with the growing desire of consumers to eat on the run and the enduring need of snackers to indulge themselves, all combine to create a strong driver for salty snack sales between now and 2020,”​ David Sprinkle, research director of Packaged Facts, said in a press release.

“While the snackification of other products such as yogurt, cheese, and proteins (meat snacks) are pulling consumers away from salty snacks, there remains sufficient interest from consumers in the snacking staples—such as potato chips and tortilla chips that are found in three-quarters of homes—that sales of salty snacks will grow moderately well over the next five years despite the increased pressure from these competing snacks,”​ the press release said.

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