Healthier snacks? Here's a cupboard full
||General Mills Global Communications |
Surprise: The more consumers snack, the healthier their eating behaviors. That’s according to market researcher NPD Group, which revealed that more consumers view snacking as a path to healthier eating habits.
It seems that those with the healthiest diets consume 36 percent more snack meals a year than the average consumer, according to NPD.
Another piece of news: Research firm Mintel indicates that food and beverages continue to contain fewer ingredients.
The No. 1 organic grain bar brand, Cascadian Farm, is in step with that trend as it introduces Oats & Honey, Oats & Cocoa and Peanut Butter flavors in a crunchy granola bar.
There are rolled oats in each bar, with as few as six other ingredients, depending on the flavor.
||Green Giant Veggie Snack Chips |
The Green Giant seems to have noticed that snacking is on the rise.
He’s introducing a Veggie Snack Chip line, with flavors of Sea Salt Multigrain Sweet Potato and Zesty Cheddar Roasted Veggie Tortilla Chip.
Made with sweet potatoes, that flavor has 14 grams of whole grain, 40 percent less fat than regular potato chips, and 140 calories in 16 chips.
The tortilla chips contain peppers, broccoli, tomato, carrot and corn that adds up to 17 grams of whole grain, 30 percent less fat than regular potato chips, and 150 calories in 13 chips.
Salted Carmel Nut in a protein bar
When it comes to ingredients, one that many snackers are looking for these days is protein, and both Fiber One and Nature Valley are meeting that demand in 2013.
Salted Carmel Nut is the Nature Valley Protein bar that brings 10 grams of protein and five grams of fiber to the table. Ingredients of whole grain oats, peanuts, almonds and caramel give this entry a little different flavor profile from what bar fans are accustomed to.
Nature Valley also is introducing its first value packaging of Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate.
Consumers have been snapping up the larger, value packaging – such sales are up 36 percent in the past two years. Those who have been buying the five-count boxes now have a 10-count option of the whole grain oats and peanut butter bar with a dark chocolate coating.
Fiber answers the call
Also in on the 2013 protein movement is Fiber One, which is combining candy bar taste with some health benefits in one of its introductions.
There is 20 percent of the Daily Value of fiber and six or seven grams of protein in the Carmel Nut or the more adventuresome Coconut Almond flavors of Fiber One Protein bars.
These are what people are calling a “permissible indulgence,” something to bring a health dividend while taking care of that mid-afternoon snack craving.
Data from NPD Group reveals that nearly 8 in 10 snack bar consumers want fiber in their products.
And still more
Both Fiber One and Nature Valley are introducing trail mix products.
Fiber One Trail Mix bar contains whole oats, chunks of chocolate, raisins, peanuts and cranberries.
Nature Valley’s Dark Chocolate Trail Mix bar has dark chocolate and sweet cherries blended with crunchy whole nuts and whole grain oats.
Not exactly a snack bar, the new Nature Valley Thins Dark Chocolate Value Pack contains 18 individually wrapped squares. Each has 80 calories.
The crispy, toasted granola squares are perfect for a late afternoon or evening snack, and are convenient to tote to workouts, sporting events, school and work.
Lärabar in cappucino
A cappucino flavor is joining the Lärabar line of nearly two dozen core flavors.
With five carefully chosen ingredients, the Cappucino flavor is Fair Trade Certified and free of gluten, dairy and soy. Java Junkies will most likely fall for this bold flavor.
Lastly, there are three new fruit-flavored snacks for early 2013, including Fruit Roll-Ups Flavor Mixers, with each box containing eight, peelable strips of Strawberry, Lemonade and Tropical flavors.
There are also two other branded fruit-flavored snacks available for the new year.
The popular Ocean Spray Fruit Flavored Snacks is introducing a Strawberry Island Splash flavor in 10-count. They’re made with fruit juice and provide 100 percent of the Daily Value of vitamin C, as are the new Hello Kitty Fruit Flavored Snacks.