While consumers navigate challenges that impact their cost of living, they continue to view snacking as an affordable and necessary indulgence. The fourth annual ‘State of Snacking’ report published by Mondelēz highlights the expanded role of snacking, as it increasingly replaces traditional meals in consumers’ lives.
The report examines year-over-year insights into how consumers around the world make snacking decisions. Last year’s study reveals how current economic challenges are affecting consumer snacking choices worldwide – with a majority of respondents continuing to prioritize snacking, despite rising costs and economic challenges.
Snaking has increased, with 86% of consumers having it as a habit in 2021, up from 78% in 2013. Factors that led to this growth include an increase in morning (+42%) and afternoon (+22%) snacking, meal skipping, and the rise in Gen Z and Millennials snacking. An average of 40% of the consumers surveyed said they “skipped at least one main meal yesterday” in 2021. This ratio was 30% in 2013.
Countries tend to fall into one of seven types of snacking patterns based on criteria such as snacking frequency, how their culture values structured meals, and their willingness to use snacks to replace meals: powerhouse, on-the-go, mini-meal, moderate, frugal, low-level, and quintessential
Key findings include that consumers around the world are snacking:
- Daily – Snacking is a staple: 71% of consumers snack at least twice a day
- Mindfully – 78% of consumers report they take time to savor indulgent snacks with 61% saying they take time to portion out snacks before eating them
- Frequently – Consumers are increasingly replacing meals with snacks, with 55% reporting a higher likelihood of eating a snack across all three standard mealtimes
- Sustainably – Reducing waste is a top priority, with seven in 10 consumers saying they prioritize snacks that have less packaging and 72% saying they typically recycle it
The ‘State of Snacking’ report was published by Mondelēz and developed in partnership with consumer polling specialist, The Harris Poll. It highlights the expanded role of snacking, as it increasingly replaces traditional meals in consumers’ lives. It includes additional research conducted by Ipsos, developed in partnership with The Food Institute.
Figure: The percentage of respondents (by country) who said they skipped at least one meal yesterday
Source: State of Snacking report, 2021
Photo: Pexels (7219554)