September_2021 - 28

Health-Aware Snackers
Inspire Innovation
Pandemic-fueled snacking surge renews focus on
wellness and better-for-you products
By Emily Jed, Contributing Editor
fter more than a year of extreme
fear and stress brought on by the
COVID-19 pandemic, which
in turn fueled a period of
exuberant snack indulgence, consumers
are prioritizing health more than
ever before. At grocery stores and
at work, they are looking for betterfor-you
nourishment by scanning
labels, noticing unfamiliar ingredients,
and rejecting items loaded with
sodium, sugar and fat - seeking as
many health benefits as possible in
every snack. As always, definitions of
healthy vary widely, from paleo, keto
and vegan to Mediterranean diets
factoring into the mix.
The wellness trend was already
long under way, but the pandemic has
been a key driver behind the rise of
health-aware snacking as many consumers
seek to shed those unwanted
pounds they put on during months
of limited mobility and after snacking
at greater frequency for comfort and
small indulgence.
And when the pandemic established
remote work and school as the
norm, daily routines lost all routine.
The regimen of three distinct meals
a day became even more blurred,
further amplifying a trend that had
also taken shape before the pandemic.
Snack food has increasingly replaced
meals instead of being consumed in
between them.
28 Automatic Merchandiser * September 2021
The pandemic has also inspired
consumers to be more open to trying
less-established brands as stay-athome
orders drove the masses to shop
the internet, expanding their horizons
beyond their routine favorites at
brick-and-mortar stores. This movement
has given emerging brands a
lower barrier to entry.
Following a lull in innovation amid
pandemic disruptions and shutdowns,
manufacturers are repositioning to
meet consumers as they reemerge
with new products that balance
enjoyment and indulgence, along
with those that fit into more wellnessfocused
The numbers speak for themselves
that snacking for pure
indulgence clearly holds its place in
the mix. Chocolate sales at c-stores
increased 8.5% to $2.76 billion for
the 52 weeks, ended May 1, 2021,
versus one year ago, according to
NielsenIQ Retail Measurement
Services, Total U.S. Convenience
data. That's up 4.15% from the end
of 2020, when chocolate sales totaled
$2.65 billion for the 52 weeks, ended
Dec. 26, per Nielsen Total U.S. Convenience
Salty snack dollar sales for the
past year grew 7.2%, according to
Nielsen data, for the 52 weeks ended
May 29, 2021, and sweet snacks dollar
sales saw a 4.8% increase for the
same period.
PIM Brands Inc. (formerly
Promotion In Motion), founded in
1979, has a long history of leading
and inspiring consumer snacking
trends and continually innovating to
meet changing demands. It's one of
America's leading snack and confection
manufacturers and one of the 50
largest global candy companies.
Based in Park Ridge, NJ, PIM
We saw fundamental
changes in snacking at
the onset and throughout
the pandemic. While all
consumers increased their
snacking during COVID,
Gen-Z and millennials did so
at a rapid pace. "
Jeff Scudillo, PIM Brands
Brands provides a range of confections,
from better-for-you to nostalgic
indulgence for vending, office
coffee service and micro markets.
They include Welch's Fruit Snacks,
Welch's Fruit n' Yogurt Snacks,
Welch's Juicefuls Juicy Fruit Snacks,
Original Gummi Factory Gummi
and Sour Candies, along with Original
Gummi FunMix, Sour Jacks Sour
Candy, Sunmaid Chocolate Raisins
and Nuclear Sqworms Sour Neon
Gummi Worms.


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of September_2021

Editor's Note
Industry News
State of the Coffee Service Industry Report
40 Under 40
Health-Aware Snackers Inspire Innovation
Back-to-School Refuel
Social Hubs
September_2021 - PCOV1
September_2021 - PCOV2
September_2021 - 1
September_2021 - 2
September_2021 - 3
September_2021 - 4
September_2021 - 5
September_2021 - Editor's Note
September_2021 - 7
September_2021 - Industry News
September_2021 - 9
September_2021 - State of the Coffee Service Industry Report
September_2021 - 11
September_2021 - 12
September_2021 - 13
September_2021 - 14
September_2021 - 15
September_2021 - 40 Under 40
September_2021 - 17
September_2021 - 18
September_2021 - 19
September_2021 - 20
September_2021 - 21
September_2021 - 22
September_2021 - 23
September_2021 - 24
September_2021 - 25
September_2021 - 26
September_2021 - 27
September_2021 - Health-Aware Snackers Inspire Innovation
September_2021 - 29
September_2021 - 30
September_2021 - 31
September_2021 - 32
September_2021 - 33
September_2021 - Back-to-School Refuel
September_2021 - 35
September_2021 - 36
September_2021 - 37
September_2021 - 38
September_2021 - 39
September_2021 - 40
September_2021 - Classifieds
September_2021 - Social Hubs
September_2021 - 43
September_2021 - 44