Every year, the president updates the country on the state of the union. But what about the state of snacking?
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For years, Americans have been left in the dark on the status of their between-meal eats. But now, major snack maker Mondelez International has shined a light on the standing of munchies in its first-ever State of Snacking report.
Snacking appears to be on the rise.
The average American now eats more snacks than meals, the report found. And 60 percent of Americans prefer to eat many small meals throughout the day as opposed to a few large meals. America isn’t alone in the trend.
“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,” Dirk Van de Put, chairman and CEO of Mondelez, said in a press release.
So why are people snacking more? About three-quarters of Americans said they were motivated to snack for a mood boost, to stay energized or to pamper themselves, according to the report. People in the rest of the world were slightly less likely to use snacks for energy and slightly more likely to enjoy a snack for a sense of comfort.
Americans were more likely than people elsewhere to say that snacking helps them get through the day and that they can’t imagine living without snacks, the report found.
More than two-thirds of Americans said that snacking can help improve the quality of their lives, according to the report from Mondelez, which owns popular snacking brands like Oreo, Chips Ahoy!, Ritz, Triscuit and Sour Patch Kids.
But Americans aren’t just snacking on sweets. People surveyed for the report were about as likely to say they can’t imagine a world without chocolate as they were to say they lean on snacking to help control hunger and manage calories.
As people snack more heavily, they’ve been looking for healthier options that meet nutritional needs, use easy-to-understand ingredients and are more portable and convenient. More than half of Americans said that “snacking is the future of food,” according to the report.
Mondelez partnered with consumer polling specialist The Harris Poll to develop the report. They surveyed more than 6,000 adults across 12 countries.
Van de Put said Mondelez is working to meet the needs of snackers around the world.
“We embrace the fact that snacking habits around the world are as diverse as the consumers who enjoy them,” Van de Put said. “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.”