Fresh Snacking Growth Drives Health & Wellness Segment
NATIONAL REPORT — Younger consumers have driven the demand for fresher options, with "Is fresh" being the No. 1 purchase driver for millennials (ages 23-40) and the iGeneration (ages 11-22) when shopping for food, new data from Mintel shows.
According to "Fresh Snacking" as part of the The Future of Fresh report, the demand for fresh has impacted the food landscape over the last three years, with the $40-billion "conventional snacking" market declining 2 percent annually, while "health & wellness snacking" grew 6 percent annually, driven by outsized growth from "fresh snacking," which grew 8 percent annually.
It is estimated that consumer interest in fresh snacking began in 2005, when smaller brands created the category by experimenting with formats, incorporating whole-food ingredients and advancing packaging to increase portability and convenience, according to Mintel. The market began accelerating in 2008, with the percentage of new, fresh-snacking product launches in the United States increasing by about four times, between 2008 and 2016 (SPINS data).
Consumers' demand for "fresh" has generated an omnichannel macro trend, but inefficiencies in the e-commerce cold-supply chain have prompted traditional retailers to capitalize on consumers' desire to buy "fresh" in brick-and-mortar stores, as they place importance on quality, price and impulse purchases, the report continued.
"The insights from Mintel further validate the opportunity that lies ahead for fresh snacking, and we plan to continue delivering tasty, nutritious products that set the bar for what consumers expect in the Fresh Set," said Bill Keith, founder and CEO of Perfect Bar LLC, sponsor of the report.
"Since being a pioneer of the fresh set more than a decade ago, we've watched as consumers' adoption of a 'fresher-is-better' mindset has driven more brands to the perimeter of the store and, in turn, shifted the retail layout to focus on making the fridge set a prominent shopping destination," Keith added. "With the fresh perimeter growing at a rate of 2.1 times the center of the store, we are able to validate the viability of 'fresh' as a continued focus for our retail partners across the nation."