When you consider the influences behind the push for healthier snacks, it’s easy to understand why healthy snack foods are becoming more readily available at just about every retail location. With more and more consumers wanting fresh, natural foods, it’s no wonder that healthy snacks are showing up in places ranging from convenience stores to specialty retail outlets. As shoppers turn to healthy snack options as part of their weight control plan or as ways to generally improve their well-being, healthy snacks won’t be displaced from store shelves any time soon.
Innovations in Healthy Snacking
With healthy snacks becoming increasingly popular with millennials, health-conscious parents, older consumers and everyone in between, several key innovations have been developed to create products that address the different reasons shoppers are buying healthy snacks. Here are some of those trends:
For the millions of people who suffer from Celiac Disease, the arrival of so many gluten-free snacks makes managing their disease much easier. People with Celiac Disease can’t process the gluten protein in wheat, so gluten-free products either have grains that don’t have this protein or use wheat that’s had the gluten protein removed from its composition. Keep in mind that although this allows people with Celiac Disease to enjoy wheat-based products like bread, the removal of the gluten protein often eliminates any nutritional value these foods would have had otherwise. This means that a lot of gluten-free foods consist of empty carbs that don’t provide vital nutrients.
With many healthy snackers wanting portable treats that provide energy enhancing, functional nutrition, energy bars have evolved significantly. Many of today’s innovative energy bars use recognizable ingredients, such as iron, vitamin C and magnesium, which make them popular with health-conscious consumers. BALANCE Bars and Kind Snacks Fruit & Nut bars are two of the most popular innovators in this niche.
A GMO is a genetically modified organism made when a gene from one species is transferred to a second one to produce something that you can’t find independently in nature. While some consider GMOs as a way to provide security for the world’s food supply, others consider genetically modified foods as a threat to their health. At least one study showed that the organs of rats who ate modified potatoes exhibited symptoms of wasting, and female rats who had a diet of genetically modified soybeans had stunted and sterile babies. Because of studies like these and the widespread suspicion of GMOs and their manufacturers, one innovation in healthy snacks is simply to avoid the use of GMOs with non-GMO snacks.
Organic foods contain no additives and or GMOs. They’re also grown without using certain things, such as synthetic pesticides, roundup herbicides and sewage sludge. While certain foods are most certainly worth the extra cost you’d normally pay for the organic label, others might not be. When it comes to buying fresh fruit and vegetables, it’s smart to buy organic snacks whenever possible. Some of the items you should especially buy organic include potatoes, tomatoes, sweet bell peppers, cherries, grapes and pears.
Fruits snacks have come a long way throughout the years. Long-lasting, tasty snacks like fruit bars and dried fruit pieces are easy to enjoy when you’re on the move and they typically come in appropriately sized portions. These snacks can be infused with things like vitamins and calcium, which support immune health and growth in children.
Salty, but Low-Sodium Snacks:
There has been plenty of development in the realm of salty, low-sodium snacks, as well. For example, General Mills reduced the salt content of Chex Mix by an impressive 36%. Other food manufacturers have created salty, low-sodium snacks from non-traditional foods. Some of the healthier salty snacks you now have to choose from include sweet potato tortilla chips, bean and rice chips and crisps made with snap peas.
To learn how Warrell Corporation can help you come up with healthy snack ideas and sell the best healthy snacks available, contact us today.