Snackers Unite!

POSTED BY Christina Arbini on Oct 2, 2009

I find it pretty ironic that after teasing a a co-worker this morning for breaking into a bag of potato chips at 10am, I came across this article noting a recent study conducted on how the potato chip market is thriving during the recession.

So what about you? Have you been reaching for more salty goodness lately or keeping it strictly healthy?

Sales Of Potato Chips Thriving In Recession

by Karlene Lukovitz

It seems that those of us who aren't chewing our nails these days are busy chewing potato chips.

Potato chip sales have leaped by 22% since the economy started to go south, according to market research firm Mintel, which compared 2007 market data against its own market estimate for the category for full-year 2009.

The analysts forecast that chip sales will taper as the economy improves, growing at about 3% annually over the next five years. Tortilla chips are expected to grow at 4% annually during the same time frame.

Mintel's explanation for potato chips' recent rise in popularity is that they are a good value, and part of the broader, continuing trend of consumers turning increasingly to salty snacks between meals and after dinner.

Fully half of kids, teens and adults ages 18 to 24 report that they eat salty snacks five times a week or more, and adults report eating such snacks 4.8 times per week (nearly once per day), according to the research firm.

Little wonder, then, that 350 new salty snacks have been launched in the U.S. thus far this year, according to Mintel's Global New Products Database.

Two in three (65%) adults say they are interested in healthier snacks such as grain or baked varieties, and 57% say there are interested in healthier alternatives such as lower-fat and lower-sodium pita chips or crackers -- but half also say these products don't taste as good.

WRITTEN BY Christina Arbini

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