Canadian Vending

Features Consumer Behaviour Trends
Paper breaks down snackers into categories


June 19, 2015
By Canadian Vending

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June 19, 2015, Chicago – Snacking is fundamentally changing the way consumers eat food in America, with 81 per cent of consumers saying they snack at least once a day, says a new white paper.

“Snacker Nation,” by Sullivan Higdon & Sink (SHS) FoodThink, details Americans’ continued obsession with snacking and outlines five distinct snacker consumer segments including the “Social Snacker.”

“Consumers have different reasons for their snacking choices and styles, so we dug deeper into these specific segments to see why they snack and how food companies can appeal to them,” said Christy Niebaum, senior FoodThink researcher, in a news release. “Consumers have evolved their definition of snacking, and it now has a social aspect to it, in addition to wanting to add variety and healthy options to their diet.”

The paper breaks down snackers into categories: “the Healthy Snacker (29 per cent),” “the Bored Snacker (28 per cent),” “the Starving Snacker (21 per cent),””the Non-Snacker (12 per cent)” and “the Social Snacker (10 per cent).” The new white paper breaks down the segments according to their particular demographic insights, snacking attitudes and possible snack offerings. The website allows visitors to determine their snacker segment by taking a quiz at shsfoodthink.com/snackerquiz and receive an in-depth profile and to download a free copy of the white paper.

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Key takeaways:

  •    44% of Americans say their definition of a snack has evolved.
  •    23% say they intend to snack more in the future, especially millennials at 37%.
  •    3 in 4 say snacking can be part of a healthy diet.

“People aren’t as concerned about spoiling their dinner by snacking anymore, and they are looking at food companies to provide them with more snack-size meal choices,” said Niebaum. “Food marketers that consider delivering a variety of smaller meals with some healthy, convenient options on the menu or on the shelf that encourage shareable meals will strongly appeal to consumers.”

FoodThink white papers are built on proprietary research conducted in 2014 and utilize the responses from more than 2,000 U.S. consumers of diverse demographic backgrounds.