Research and Trends

Kids, Teens are Top Consumers of Snack Foods While Women Outpace Men

The typical American eats over 1,000 snack-oriented convenience foods throughout the year.

May 21, 2013
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The typical American eats over 1,000 snack-oriented convenience foods throughout the year, and kids and teens are the heaviest users of this assortment of snacks, which include fresh fruit, sweet and savory snacks, reports The NPD Group, a leading global information company. Women eat, on average, 3.1 snack-oriented convenience foods a day compared to the 2.7 snacks men eat a day, according to NPD’s snacking research.

About eight of every 10 in-home snack food eatings are considered to be a snack-oriented convenience food versus other foods, regardless of time of day, finds NPD’s SnackTrack, which continually monitors the consumption of snack-oriented foods both in-home and away. During a typical year, there are over 356 billion eatings of snack-oriented convenience foods.

Among the top 10 motivators for selecting a particular snack are: “like the taste,” “was hungry,” “had a craving,” “favorite snack,” and “was simple and easy to eat,” according to SnackTrack. While taste is the leading motivator across all age groups, women are more likely to select snack foods to satisfy specific expectations (i.e. chocolate, sweet, crunchy, healthy) while kids’ favorite snacks are simply fun to eat. Fresh fruit, chocolate, potato chips, cookies and yogurt are, in rank order, the top five snack-oriented convenience foods consumed annually.

“An individual’s mood and situation has a strong effect on what will be snacked on,” says Darren Seifer, NPD food and beverage industry analyst. “Connecting your marketing messages to the emotional nature of snacking — think taste, cravings and indulgence — will help drive your product’s selection.”  

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