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4 Candy, Snack Trends to Watch in 2021

Tropical and spicy flavors are trending, according to the Sweets & Snacks Expo
Photograph: Shutterstock

Ahead of its annual event later this month, the Sweets & Snacks Expo has released the top trends for the confectionery and snack categories in 2021.

The show, to be held June 22-25 at the Indiana Convention Center in Indianapolis, is sponsored by the National Confectioners Association (NCA) and brings together retail professionals and company representatives who showcase the latest in candy and snack products.

Many of those new products will fall into the following trends:

Smaller pack sizes: More companies continue to develop smaller pack sizes containing 200 calories or less, which allows consumers to make informed choices when they are ready to treat themselves to their favorite snack or candy, Sweets & Snacks said.

Tropical flavors: Tropical flavors, especially pineapple and coconut, are taking center stage.

Mix and match combinations: It’s all about getting the best of both worlds as candy and snack manufacturers develop products that are sweet and salty or fruity and tart.

Heat: Sweets & Snacks said some of the hottest new spicy snacks feature flavors such as chili, sriracha, jalapeno and habanero.

With last year’s show canceled due to the coronavirus, NCA President and CEO John Downs said, “This year is even more important as we get back to business. While consumer purchasing habits may have shifted to meet the new environment, manufacturers are exceeding expectations with new products, flavors and innovations.”

NCA earlier this month released the most popular summer candy types and flavors in celebration of June being National Candy Month. Strawberry was a top flavor, and chocolate reigned in types. 

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