Despite the promised return to form of impulse snacks, it’s still sharing and larger format packs that are delivering the goods for retailers.
With so many shoppers spending so much time at home over the last 18 months, it’s no surprise that the bagged snacks category has been performing for retailers. “Bagged snacks remain a vital driver of growth within convenience and demand shows no sign of slowing,” says Matt Collins, Trading Director at KP Snacks.
“Since the beginning of the pandemic there has been a marked increase in savoury snacking occasions within the home, which were up 47% at the height of lockdown, with crisps, snacks and nuts (CSN) continuing to perform ahead of other impulse snacking categories such as biscuits and chocolate [Kantar, Apr 2020]. Local retailers have also grown in importance with more people shopping locally. Some 67% more people are choosing convenience for ‘main shop’ and 27% of people are expected to visit convenience stores more often post-lockdown [HIM 2020].”
What does this mean for retailers? In a word: sharing. “In the last year, we have seen a significant increase in multipacks and sharing format sales, with familiar, trusted and well-known brands doing exceptionally well,” says Collins. “Strong familiar brands are driving individual segment growth and our diverse portfolio is currently growing at 5.5% [Nielsen, May 2021] whilst meeting a range of different need states.”
Unsurprisingly, the number one CSN drive is taste. “At KP Snacks, we are in the business of making great tasting snacks that serve a number of customer and shopper occasions, across all snacking segments (crisps, snacks, nuts, popcorn), delivered in all formats (singles, multipacks, sharing) and up and down the value spectrum.”
But it’s sharing where the action is at. The sharing segment is strong and growing. Worth over £1.3bn, the largest within CSN, it is currently experiencing growth of 7.9% [Nielsen, May 2021]. So if you want to maximise sales of crisps and snacks, make sure you get your sharing and larger format range sorted.
For Collins, the key trends coming down the line are a focus on healthy snacking, ‘together time’ as people spend more time at home, and a heightened importance in the role of PMPs in convenience as shoppers’ budgets are squeezed.
His advice is clear: “We consider a number of our brands to be must-stocks. McCoy’s alone is worth £132.8m [Nielsen, May 2021] and is the UK’s No.1 ridged crisp brand. Salt & Vinegar and Flame Grilled Steak are the No.1 and No.2 best-selling meal deal choices, and the launch of McCoy’s Fire Pit taps into the fastest growing CSN flavours of Spicy (+7.1%), Meaty (+5.8%) and BBQ (+4.5%) [Nielsen, Apr 2020]. The new range is available in Multipack at an RRP of £1.70, a 45g Grab Bag format with an RRP of 90p, and a 62.5g £1 PMP format.
“We would also advise retailers to stock pop chips, Hula Hoops, KP Nuts, Tyrrells, and Butterkist.”