New data from global market intelligence agency Mintel spotlights the developments and future outlook of fresh snacking, in its recent report, “The Future of Fresh.” Sponsored by Perfect Bar LLC, maker of The Original Refrigerated Protein Bar, and independently researched and written by Mintel in collaboration with SPINS, the report quantifies the impact and implications of fresh in CPG, ecommerce and retail, as well as illuminating the immense opportunities that lie ahead.
Fresh Snacking on the Rise
With 94 percent of adults snacking daily, fresh snacking is driving the growth in grocery stores’ snacking categories.
Data reported by SPINS indicate that the $40 billion conventional snacking market declined 2 percent annually over the past three years, while health-and-wellness snacking grew 6 percent annually, driven by outsize growth from fresh snacking, which grew 8 percent annually.
Mintel research has identified six packaged-product segments to most clearly define the fresh snacking category: refrigerated protein bars, protein snack packs, drinkable soups, bottled smoothies, yogurts, and other products such as hummus and guacamole.
These products have captured the interest of younger consumers, with “fresh” being the No. 1 purchase driver for Millennials (age 23-40) and the iGeneration or Gen Z (age 11-22), when shopping for food.
Despite Rise of Ecommerce, Consumers Still Shop Brick-and-Mortar for Fresh
According to SPINS data, 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. However, fresh-snacking introductions in grocery stores paralleled the rise of ecommerce, representing the growth of a “fresh” niche in brick-and-mortar retail, one that the online channel currently doesn’t serve particularly well, due to shipping and cold supply-chain challenges.