A new report launched by Mondelēz International confirms that global snacking is on the rise as more consumers opt for snacks over meals to fulfill evolving needs. The study unveiled a new long-term strategy and introduced a new purpose: to empower people to snack right.
The State of Snacking™ report is a global consumer trends study examining the role snacking plays across the world in meeting consumers’ evolving needs: busy modern lifestyles, the growing desire for community connection and a more holistic sense of well-being. The study reveals the rise of global snacking, underscored by regional parallels. These comparisons demonstrate how snacks are helping lead the future of food by delivering on the spectrum of day-to-day.
Developed in partnership with consumer polling specialist, The Harris Poll, the report complements Mondelēz International’s global snacking knowledge estate with new research conducted among thousands of consumers across 12 countries. The report sheds light on snacking as a growing behavior worldwide. Notably, 6 in 10 adults worldwide (59%) say they prefer to eat many small meals throughout the day, as opposed to a few larger ones, with younger consumers especially leaning into snacks over meals as that number rises to 7 in 10 among Millennials (70%).
Key findings from the 2019 State of Snacking report include:
The relationship with food is fundamentally changing:
- For consumers around the world, the role food plays in health and wellbeing is increasingly top of mind; people are more commonly considering how smaller bites – snacks – affect their emotional wellbeing, as well as their physical health.
For more than 8 in 10 people, convenience (87%) and quality (85%) are among the top factors impacting snack choice.
80% of consumers are looking for healthy, balanced bites.
71% of adults say snacking helps them control their hunger and manage their calories throughout the day.
- However, moments of indulgence continue to have an important place in daily routines.
80% of adults worldwide acknowledge the need for balance by appreciating the option of both healthy and indulgent snacks depending on the moment of need.
77% of consumers agree there is a time and a place for a healthy snack, and a time and a place for an indulgent one.
The majority of people say snacks are just as important to their mental (71%) and emotional (70%) wellbeing as their physical wellbeing.
Snacking is about so much more than what we eat:
- Snacking is a key way for people around the world to connect to their culture and share their sense of identity with their communities and families.
71% say snacking is a way to remind themselves of home.
7 in 10 adults make an effort to share their favorite childhood snacks with others (70%).
- Around the world, more than 8 in 10 parents use snack time as a small way to connect with their children (82%).
76% of parents use snacks to pass cultural snacking rituals on to their children.
More than three out of four parents (78%) say the snacks they choose for their children reflect who they are as a parent.
For many consumers, snacking represents:
- Nostalgia: 3 in 4 people say some of their fondest childhood memories include sharing a snack with their parents (74%) and that snacking on these childhood favorites makes them nostalgic (76%).
- Identity: 78% of Millennials say food is a major part of their identity, while 82% say sharing a snack is a simple way to connect across cultures.
- Tradition: Most say there are snacks their family eats that have been passed down through many generations (70%) and that, to this day, they have traditions about how they eat certain foods that developed when they were children (77%).
- Connection: 7 in 10 people around the world make an effort to share their favorite childhood snacks with others (70%), even admitting that, “sometimes it’s worth the extra calories to share a snack with someone I love” (74%).
Dirk Van de Put, chairman and CEO of Mondelēz International, commented on the report’s findings: “We see that the average global adult now eats more snacks than meals on a given day, driven by a number of evolving demands largely associated with how we live today, including a growing need for convenience, yearning to share nostalgic and cultural experiences, expanded wellbeing preferences and the desire for choices that range from wholesome to indulgent.”
He added: “However people snack, they should not have to choose between snacking and eating right, or to worry about the impact their choices have on the world and their communities. That’s why we’re committed to empowering people to snack right.”
This survey was conducted online by The Harris Poll on behalf of Mondelēz International from September 16 – 27, 2019, among 6,068 global adults ages 18 and older. The research spanned 12 markets, including: The United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, France, Germany, The United Kingdom, Russia, China, India, Indonesia, and Australia. Other key groups analyzed include: Centennials ages 18-22, Millennials ages 23-38, Gen Xers ages 39-54, Boomers ages 55-73 and the Silent Generation ages 75+.