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4 Game-Time Snack Trends Customers are Looking for this Football Season

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These days, consumers are more prone to snacking than ever before, and for grocery stores, that can mean big business—especially as the fall sports season gets underway. After all, groups of friends and families meeting in the living room on Sunday afternoons (and a handful of other nights during the week) to cheer on their favorite team often indulge in tasty, flavorful snacks and apps.

Retailers should make sure they’re stocking a robust variety of snacks ranging from healthy to indulgent. And, since many consumers are focused on convenience, including options that are easy to prepare will be key as well. Check out what’s trending to keep store aisles fully stocked and ready for hungry sports fans.

More is better

According to Technomic’s 2018 Snacking Occasion report, 71% of consumers say that when they snack they are usually watching TV at home. But as for what they’re snacking? Compared to two years ago, 13% of consumers are consuming more sweet snacks and 13% are consuming more salty snacks; those numbers are slightly higher among younger consumers. For consumers ages 18- to 34-years old, 20% are eating more sweets while 16% are reaching for more salty snacks. What does that mean for grocery stores? Simply that there’s ample opportunity to stock a wide range of sweet and salty snacking options.

Packaged and nostalgic snacks

For young snackers, packaged fruit snacks are a crowd pleaser, so stock up on options such as Fruit Gushers, Fruit Roll-Ups and Fruit by the Foot. Older snackers also enjoy these options, as they’re a throwback to their school days. Nostalgic snacks, such as Bugles, are another great option to highlight and promote. Available in four core flavors—original, nacho cheese, chocolate peanut butter and caramel—these iconic conical snacks hit the spot.

Shareable snacks are party perfect

Speed of preparation is crucial for many shoppers when they buy snacks. In fact, a full 50% say it’s important to them when making a choice, according to Technomic’s Snacking Occasion report. Options such as Chex Mix are a must-have for game day and take no time at all to serve. Other options to keep on the shelves include guacamole (prepared or as a display of avocados, tomatoes, onions, cilantro and limes) and tortilla chips, potato chips and French onion dip and oven-baked options such as Totino’s Pizza Rolls.

Branded options

According to the Snacking Occasion report, 57% of consumers say that a snack’s brand is important to them when choosing what to buy. So, ensuring that well-known brands are on the shelves (and well-promoted within the store with proper signage) can be key to increasing sales. For example, who doesn’t love the Pillsbury Doughboy? Highlight Pillsbury crescent rolls in-store and offer them up alongside cocktail wieners or hot dogs so that shoppers can prepare a speed-scratch appetizer for their festivities. This well-loved snack is perfect for game day. — Try setting up a sample station at the store if possible, too—81% of consumers say that flavor or taste is important to them when choosing snacks, so if they’re able to try it, they may be more likely to buy it.

Stocking a variety of snack options at grocery stores is crucial—from oven baked treats to zero-prep options to name-brand favorites, customers should have no problem finding their favorites.

This post is sponsored by General Mills