There are a few new topics in particular that are trending—like snacking. Snacking has become more common through the decades, but why? What is driving consumer snacking habits, motives, and frequency? Let us check out what we found with a quick review of some market research studies!
Everyone Seems to Snack
According to our research, almost everyone (97% of survey respondents) snacks at some point during the week. Close to one-third (31%) of research participants reported snacking a few days a week, while 33% reported snacking once per day and nearly one-quarter (24%) reported snacking multiple times per day. Only 3% of survey-takers said they never snack.
Why Do People Snack?
Motives behind snacking appear to be plentiful; options included “I am hungry or thirsty,” “I crave sweet snacks,” “I crave salty snacks,” “Out of boredom,” “I need energy,” and “It is too long until my next meal”—to name a few. The combination of hunger and thirst was the top reported driver for snacking. Craving something sweet or salty were the second and third most popular reasons for snacking.
We also compared the difference in motives between frequent and infrequent snackers. While the hunger-and-thirst reason was the top driver for all snackers, infrequent snackers (those who reported snacking once a week or less) reported snacking out of hunger or thirst more often than those who snack multiple times per week, once per day or multiple times a day. Those who snack multiple times a day were more likely to snack because they were craving something sweet or out of habit.
Can You Mindfully Snack?
Yes, you can snack with purpose and many snackers have confirmed that selecting tasty food items that also have nutrition benefits – think powerhouse combinations like B.A.R.E. Creations is helpful in making the most of eating between meals.
Or you can snack with purpose and pick snacks that come from food groups that many of us do not eat enough of (e.g., fruits/veggies, dairy, whole grains and alternative sources of protein like legumes and nuts and seeds). This means choosing snacks that help you meet your daily nutrient needs, especially important if you miss or skip meals.
For a more satisfying snack, strive toward those with heart-healthy unsaturated fats, fiber, and protein. Think powerhouse combinations like B.A.R.E Creations where you can add fruit, nuts and yogurt, or whole-grains and peanut butter for that extra kick and sensory interest.