Other Alternative Snacks
unique flavors, functional ingredients and different types of snacks to meet specific dietary needs.
As a result, gluten-free and low sodium alternative snack lines are on the rise.
“There are two current trends in snacking,” said
Kevin Papacek, director of marketing for Minong, Wis-
consin-based Jack Link’s. “First off, there is a growing
emphasis on the importance of satiety and protein
[think protein bars]. The second trend has revealed itself
in many snacks with globally inspired flavors.”
Providing a wide range of alternative snacks,
both healthy and indulgent, is key since shoppers
are seeking both types. “Generally, we are seeing
that convenience store shoppers are looking for
healthier options than what is typically available,”
said Jodi Katz, manager, communications at NBTY
Inc., Ronkonkoma, New York. “That being said,
more than two-thirds of these shoppers will allow
themselves the indulgence of less healthy snacks if
that’s what they see front and center.”
Placement Is Key
To compete in the alternative snacks arena, c-store retailers need to create a destination that is highly visible
at the store level — a challenge with limited shelf space.
“It can be difficult for category managers who are
looking to expand their alternative snack offerings
to take space from traditional profit makers like
candy,” said Andrew Simmon, business unit manager, convenience channel, at Battle Creek, Michi-gan-based Kellogg Co.
Therefore, secondary placement opportunities
such as in open-air coolers, on cooler doors, by the
coffee section, at the register or via a clip strip, are
of Sales Monthly Sales Monthly GP GP Margin
58.9% $829 $351 41.5%
28.6% $403 $170 43.3%
6.8% $79 $33 40.1%
5.6% $96 $41 42.8%
(Source: 2013 NACS State of the Industry Data; CSX LLC; Nielsen)
attractive options. Retailers also should draw attention to the products with straightforward external
or in-store signage.
Many manufacturers assist retail customers with
marketing. In addition to providing couponing programs for retailer use, Crunchies Natural Snacks
samples and demos its products nationwide to educate consumers about its freeze-dried snack line.
Jack Link’s offers a number of placement options
for retailers that capitalize on the impulse-driven
C-STORES: Alternative snacks were up 4.8% in dollars from
2012 sales and up 1.0% in units from 2012.