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ROCKVILLE, Md. -- Busy lifestyles that encourage on-the-go eating, fewer restaurant visits and a growing tendency to replace meals with smaller, more frequent snacks are prompting American consumers to snack more than ever, according to market researcher Packaged Facts' new report, Salty Snacks in the U.S.
Some of this growth is due to the increased development of healthier snack foods that still taste good, resulting in 14 million "healthy" salty snackers who exercise often, seek out healthy-ingredient foods of all kinds, and don't see a conflict between craving salty snacks and pursuing a healthy snacking diet.
Nationwide, 50 million consumers who often snack between meals agree that "salted snacks are my favorite snack," and 90 percent of households report eating salty snacks within the past 30 days.
Part of salty snacks' evolution into better-for-you products comes from a change in product labeling that reflects the labeling for other better-for-you positioned foods, such as fruit- and nut-based snacks, according to Packaged Facts Research Director David Sprinkle. Salty snacks now often highlight attributes such as being non-GMO, vegan or organic. They are also often labeled with subjective attributes such as local, pure, real, natural, safe, clean, minimally processed and allergy-friendly.
Packaged Facts forecasts that multiple factors will converge to generate faster growth for the salty snacks market during 2014-2018. Marketers will continue to add more healthy-ingredient products to the salty snack segment in order to meet demand, including offerings from niche entrepreneurial companies that focus on bringing innovative health-ingredient salty snacks to consumers, the company said.
The full report is available for purchase on Packaged Facts' website.