Smucker's Trend Briefing: Sweet Snacks

A collaboration between The J.M. Smucker Company and Technomic designed to provide the latest consumer and trend insights around this growing segment.

A collaboration between The J.M. Smucker Company and Technomic designed to provide the latest consumer and trend insights around this growing segment.


April 2018: Sweet Snacks

Cookies, candy and ice cream are classic childhood snacks. Because consumers often see snacks as treats, it’s no surprise that sweet varieties remain consumer favorites as they age. However, with the changing definition of snacking and an awareness of health moving to the forefront, sweet snacks have evolved on restaurant menus. Operators need to find the sweet spot—pun intended—in order to compete for share of this uber-appealing snack type. Read more »


March 2018: Breakfast Snacks

Operators are learning that marrying breakfast with snacks is a recipe for success. Both are popular foodservice occasions with consumers and together offer a tremendous amount of opportunity for operators to drive traffic. Further, breakfast snacks fit into consumers’ demanding on-the-go lifestyles that leave little time for traditional sit-down meals. And larger industry trends, such as the growth of all-day and second breakfast, also showcase the need for more breakfast snacks at restaurants. Read more »


February 2018: Rising Stars in Coffee

Traditional coffee is the most purchased coffee type among consumers today. However, more individuals are also showing interest in seeing a greater variety of coffees at foodservice locations, including those that feature new brewing methods and flavors. Since coffee remains deep-rooted in consumers’ daily consumption habits, operators are innovating more around this beverage than ever before to broaden appeal and increase traffic. Read more »


January 2018: Snackified Entrees

Mini entrees billed as snacks are the current hot-ticket item on many top chain restaurant menus. Why? Not only has snacking consumption increased, but 27% of 18- to 34-year-olds even say they like to purchase snacks at restaurants instead of full meals. Plus, a notable 59% of consumers say it’s very important that snacks aren’t too large, which is higher than the proportion who say it’s important that snacks aren’t too small (49%). Read more »


January 2018: Regional Hispanic Snacks

The relatively newer trend of regional Hispanic snacks is poised for growth as a result of rising interest in authentic ethnic foods, snacking and transparency. As diners increasingly demand to know the influences behind the foods they’re eating and request more varied Latin foods and flavors, regional Hispanic snacks will further gain ground at restaurants. Read more »


November 2017: Traditional Coffee

Traditional coffee—which includes regular and specialty hot and iced coffees as well as frozen blended coffee—is the most widely consumed beverage beyond tap water measured in Technomic’s Beverage Consumer Trend Report. Thus, understanding consumer purchase drivers and consumption habits, as well as associated trends around traditional coffee, is necessary to capture more traffic. Read more »


October 2017: Coffee Beverages as Snacks

As snacking gains momentum among consumers, many are also broadening their definition of snacks to include beverages. Nearly two-thirds of consumers say that they purchase beverages for snacks at least occasionally, according to Technomic’s Snacking Occasion Consumer Trend Report. And while these beverages run the gamut from juices to smoothies to teas, coffee beverages in particular hold great potential as snacks... Read more »


September 2017: Better-for-You Snacks

Snacking is becoming more ingrained in consumers’ everyday eating behaviors. One reason is because 40% of consumers believe that snacks are part of a healthful diet. Snacking healthfully can supply energy and nutrition needed to get through the day, which is especially key for consumers' increasingly on-the-go lifestyles. Read more »


May 2017: Starches

Breakfast starches like pancakes, waffles and French toast are such an integral part of the breakfast occasion for many consumers, and as such, they are customary items on operators’ menus. Not only are these breakfast starches the ultimate morning comfort foods but they also appeal to both adults and kids alike. Read more »


April 2017: Kids Menus

Two-fifths of consumers (40%) have a child who has ordered a kids breakfast item at a restaurant or other foodservice location in the past year. Read more »


January 2017: Millennials

Millennials, adults born between 1977 and 1992, make up nearly 30% of the population aged 13 to 70. This generation is strong in number, opinion and influence, exercising an estimated spending power of $200 billion, behind only baby boomers. Read more »


January 2017: Generation Z

Gen Z, individuals born between 1993 and 2003, are coming of age. Since this generation grew up during the recent economic recession beginning in 2008, which perhaps financially affected their (mostly) Gen X parents, they are more value-minded when it comes to their restaurant behaviors. Read more »


January 2017: Baby Boomers/Matures

Baby boomers, individuals between the ages of 51 and 70, and matures, individuals older than 70, are entering new life stages, including retirement and senior living facilities. Read more »


December 2016: Gen X

Generation X, which represents those born between 1966 and 1976, is the smallest of the four generations because it spans just 10 years. Members of Gen X make up about one-fifth (19%) of the current adult population of the U.S. and are heavy foodservice users. Read more »


November 2016: Baby Boomers & Matures

Baby boomers, who are between the ages of 51 and 70, and matures, who are older than 70, are entering new life stages, including retirement and senior living facilities. Read more »


October 2016: Lodging

Foodservice at lodging facilities —like hotels, motels, casino hotels and resorts —is evolving to meet consumers’ increasing demands for higher-quality offerings. Read more »


October 2016: Mobile Restaurants

Mobile restaurants continue to flourish, especially those spotlighting breakfast. Day after day, operators of food trucks, food trailers and food carts continue to sell out of their breakfast items. Read more »


September 2016: K-12 Schools

Foodservice programs at K–12 schools are undergoing substantial changes, largely due to government regulations. Strict nutrition standards are putting foodservice directors in the hard position of having to implement federal mandates while still providing quality-tasting food and beverages to a varied demographic of students. Read more »


July 2016: College & University

At college and university campuses, creativity is found not only in the classrooms but also in the foodservice. Every year, college campus dining facilities are at the forefront of innovation, setting trends such as transparency and social awareness for the rest of the foodservice industry to follow. Read more »


June 2016: Hospitals

Hospitals are working hard to attain a favorable perception of their foodservice. One of the bigger challenges for hospitals is gauging consumers' foodservice needs for three distinct types of diners – staff, visitors and patients. Read more »


June 2016: Senior Living

Senior living facilities – which include assisted living, skilled nursing, long-term care and short-term care – comprise a sizeable portion of the healthcare industry. Although traditionally associated more with medical services, many of these establishments are modernizing their foodservice programs to feature new restaurant-inspired formats. Read more »


January 2016: Better-for-You Breakfast

Consumers’ definitions of health reflect an ongoing evolution. Moving beyond the need for lower-calorie or lower-fat content in foods, restaurant goers look for breakfast offerings that offer functionality, freshness and the ability to impart a greater sense of well-being. Read more »


October 2015: Breakfast Handhelds

Breakfast handhelds are essential at both restaurants and retailers. As today’s consumers increasingly request convenient foods to eat during the morning rush, operators need to fulfill morning cravings with satisfying on-the-go options. Read more »


October 2015: Non-Meat Proteins

Protein has been a major buzzword in the foodservice industry over the past few years. From the rise of protein-centered restaurant concepts to the growth of high-protein meals on menus, the industry is increasingly inundated with this healthy staple. Read more »

July 2015: Breakfast Beverages

Beverage options on morning menus used to be slim, but today’s breakfast drink selections abound. Operators are innovating all types of beverages through flavor experimentation and exciting new preparations. Read more »


May 2015: Condiments, Toppings & Sauces

The breakfast daypart has greatly evolved over the past few years as operators find new ways to entice consumers to visit foodservice locations for their morning meal. One breakfast category that is particularly pushing the boundaries of innovation is condiments, toppings and sauces. Read more »

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