No matter the time of year, many parents feel there’s not enough time in each day to get everything done. As parents rush from carpool to sports practice, they’re demanding not just convenience, but delicious options to give to kids during snack attack moments.
Millennial moms prioritize nutrition 88% of the time over both price and convenience, according to research conducted by Influenster, a website for all manner of product reviews.¹ Twenty-eight percent of households with kids are more likely to be looking to be looking for natural or organic snacks, according to data from research firm, Information Resources, Inc.² This means a big opportunity for retailers. The same study concluded that that households with children represent 40% of snack sales and 100% of snack growth (+12.7% vs. 2015).²
Chris Russell, group director of shopper insights for The Coca-Cola Company, says that in order to win over these shoppers – especially the millennial mom – it’s important to support the desire for healthier options. “Stores can earn loyalty from that group by ‘having their back’ and suggesting new and different healthy snacks and beverages for school lunches and after school snacks,” Russell says.
Russell points to a Texas-based supermarket chain as an example of how a store can have a customer’s back and engender loyalty. At back-to-school time, the chain directs shoppers to a website with a helpful “Back-to-School Guide” for parents that includes suggestions for kid-friendly lunches, snack ideas, and homework tips.
According to Nielsen data, single serve water was the top growing beverage in the 2016 back-to-school season, followed by sports drinks.³ Russell says that many retailers are finding lasting success with water, sports drinks, and sparkling water by creating a new endcap solution with themes. Parents can help kids refuel and refresh after a big game.
“Coca-Cola has the power brands – like POWERADE®, smartwater®, vitaminwater®, DASANI®, and DASANI® Sparkling – that can drive new snack-drink occasions with both private label and branded snack items,” Russell says.
Snack-size items are filling lunch boxes year-round, according to a study by The Hartman Group, a market research firm.⁴ Meanwhile, dairy is rising in popularity as a quick beverage or snack that both parents and young scholars can enjoy. Student athletes are turning to chocolate milk and protein drinks like fairlife® and Core Power® to rebuild and recover after workouts.³
In addition to dairy-case items, it’s the juice and juice boxes that remain popular choices in school lunches and after school, according to Russell. He says, “Single servings of Simply® Juices and Lemonade and Minute Maid® Juice Boxes are right in the lunchbox with new additions like squeezable yogurt and veggies and ranch dip.” The demand for convenience seems to be a trend that is here to stay.
¹ Influenster, study conducted July 28-August 3, 2015 and published by AdWeek, August 24, 2015.
² Information Resources, Inc., Snacking Survey, How America Eats: 2016 State of the Snack Food Industry, April 6, 2016.
³ Nielsen Scantrack, Total U.S. Grocery data ending July 30, 2016.
⁴ Progressive Grocer, Cool for School, Melissa Abbott, VP of Culinary Insights, The Hartman Group, October 8, 2015.