As Americans begin to send their kids back to school, schedules inevitably get a bit more hectic, leaving less and less time for healthy meal planning and preparation. With health-and-wellness snacks trending as one of the fastest growing categories in the grocery store, retailers offering a fresh, convenient take on easy to grab snacks is exactly what busy parents and students need.
According to Mintel, 94% of adults snack daily, which is driving growth in six key segments of fresh snacking: protein snack packs, refrigerated protein bars, drinkable soups, bottled smoothies, yogurts, and others like hummus and guacamole. But, it’s not just adults gravitating towards snacks when shopping the perimeter, fresh is driving discovery and purchases for younger generations as well.
Both Millennials (age 23-40) and Gen Z (age 11-22) are craving fresh options for any time of the day, helping them stay on schedule for class, practice, recitals, and play dates, without having to compromise.
When shopping the perimeter, 32% of consumers are looking for new foods, according Mintel. As Millennials, the generation driving growth in fresh, natural and organic, become parents, they’re shopping for more kid-friendly options with those same standards. This positions the perimeter to continue to grow as more consumers, especially Millennial parents, move away from processed foods in favor of fresh and freshly prepared foods.
Heading into the fall, retailers can help ease the stress parents feel when preparing to send their kids back to school by providing a robust assortment of fresh snacking options throughout the perimeter.
What could this look like?
Morning Snacks: Pre-packed hard-boiled eggs or yogurt to eat on the way to school, deconstructed lettuce wraps kits to be built at lunch, bulk nuts or seeds, or pre-cut fresh fruit.
Afternoon Snacks: Refrigerated bars or natural pudding cups for an afternoon pick me up. Natural cheese and protein snack packs, hummus and pre-cut vegetables, or parmesan cheese cracker crisps that can easily be placed in backpacks or sports bags.