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Consumer and Innovation
Trends in Savory Snacks
Opportunities in potato chips, popcorn, nuts and seeds,
processed snacks, and other savory snacks
Category Series. Published September 2013
Sensory & Indulgence
Source: Datamonitor's analysis3
• The impulsive nature of most savory snack purchases
can limit consumer involvement in consumption,
causing products to suffer from perceived sensory
• An over-reliance on incremental flavor and marketing
innovation, rather than category breakthroughs. There
is also a risk of newness for newness's sake.
• An increasing focus on health undermines the
indulgence/treat status of savory snacks.
• Consumers are drawn to savory snacks when looking
for a treat, making indulgence a key purchasing trigger
in the category.
• Savory snacks effectively carry a broad range of
flavors to create a stimulating sensory experience.
Snackers are open to new novel flavors and textures.
• Exposure to foreign and "exotic" cuisines is prompting
demand for hot and spicy flavors.
• Flavor-match via cross-category promotions to
increase product uptake.
• "Alterna-chips" cater to health-conscious and
• Create and own "micro-occasions" that a consumer
can use to justify their snacking.
• Savory snacks face stiff competition from other "treat"
categories that are considered more indulgent, such
as chocolate and ice-cream.
• Defend against stiff competition from popcorn, which
welcomes any flavor it is paired with and is considered
a healthier snacking option at the same time.
Overview Novelty and variety Flavor trends Gourmet popcorn Consumption occasions
Easy & Affordable
Mamma Chia ventures into the "drinkable" snacks space with its new
In March 2013, Mamma Chia announced the launch of Chia Squeeze Vitality
Snacks – a new four-SKU line of hydrated chia seeds blended with fruit and
vegetable purees. Packaged in a squeezable "lightweight" pouch, the 70-
calorie products are targeted at on-the-go consumption and each can be
"carried easily in a backpack, lunchbox, purse, briefcase, or gym bag and
does not need refrigeration." The product is targeted at all age groups, but
according to Datamonitor's analysis, young people, particularly those aged
15–17, find drinkable snacks most appealing as a food and drink concept.
Case study: Chia Squeeze Vitality Snack
Source: Mamma Chia's official website; Datamonitor's Consumer Survey May/June 20134
"Organic chia seeds are paired with delicious
fruits and vegetables to create an on-the-go,
nutrient-rich snack for active souls of all ages."
Mamma Chia's official press release
Global: consumers who find products that come in the format of a
drinkable snack appealing, 2013
Overview Private label Value-consciousness Convenience Simplicity
Health & Wellness
Health-consciousness remains an important driver for NPD in the savory snacks category
Source: Datamonitor's analysis5
Consumer insight Innovation implications
Consumers associate "naturalness" with
Consumers are mindful of their dietary salt
intake. However, taste remains a primary factor
in snack choices.
Consumers are adopting a purposeful
approach to weight management and looking
to snack healthily.
Consumers express a widening interest in
ingredient detail when making food choices.
Drive purchase by explicitly making "natural" and
"additive-free" claims through product labeling
and marketing initiatives.
Determine what will be the "big innovation" to
tackle the health/taste dilemma.
Position jerky as a weight-management snack by
emphasizing its high protein content to weight-
Move beyond simple health messages to
ingredient specificity while making product
Consumers are increasingly embracing
"convenient health" attributes of functional
Incorporate "superfoods" like quinoa and chia
seeds that have multiple health benefits.
Emerging market consumers prefer bolder, more exotic flavors
Economic growth and demographic shifts are fueling consumer
demand for new and indulgent food product experiences in
developing countries. Emerging market consumers are more willing
to experiment with food than their counterparts in developed
markets. Indeed nearly two thirds of consumers from emerging
markets find a product with a new and exotic flavor appealing.
Exposure to other cultures is influencing their taste in food.
Highlighting this, in 2013, PepsiCo India announced the launch of
three fusion-flavored variants of its Kurkure brand. The products
draw inspiration from foreign cuisines and local spices and
Flavor innovation is key to targeting emerging markets
Source: Datamonitor's Consumer Survey May/June 2013 *Developed markets include Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Singapore,
South Korea, Spain, Sweden, UK, US; **Developing markets include India, China, Brazil, Indonesia, Russia, Turkey, Mexico, Poland, South Africa ;  PepsiCo
India's official press release6
Consumers who find a product that has a new and exotic
flavor appealing, 2013
"Kurkure is a brand loved by consumers for its savory
offerings that appeal to every Indian. The launch of
fusion flavor brings alive our brand essence of 'Twist
on Tradition' by offering a great blend of Indian and
international taste to the palate."¹
Nalin Sood, executive vice president of foods, PepsiCo India,
quoted in an official press release by PepsiCo India
Overview Multicultural marketing Emerging markets Migrating influence