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Innova Market Insights reports that fruit-based snacks are now the number-three subcategory within snacks overall when it comes to new product development.
Fruit-based snacks are now one of the top growth areas within the global snacks category, Innova Market Insights reports. The market researcher says that the share of global tracked snack-launch activity attributed to fruit-based snacks has more than doubled over the past five years, rising from less than 8% to nearly 18% over that period. Consequently, fruit-based snacks are now the number-three snacks subcategory overall, trailing only savory/salty snacks and snack nuts/seeds, Innova Market Insights says.
One factor behind the category’s growth may well be the variety of products that fall under the umbrella of fruit-based snacks. “The market is now very diverse,” says Lu Ann Williams, director of innovation at Innova Market Insights, in a press release. She adds that it includes everything from dried snacking fruit to fruit bars and processed fruit snacks.
Additionally, as the market has expanded, fruit and nut mixes have become more and more popular, with many launches featuring increasingly “unusual and exotic varieties of both,” according to Innova Market Insights. Ingredient additions are also being used to increase value in some offerings, with healthy options like yogurt or coconut appearing in many fruit-snack launches, as well as indulgent assists from dessert ingredients like chocolate.
Another area of innovation has been in delivery systems, as manufacturers continually innovate with a slew of different product types for fruit-based snacks.
“There is ongoing activity in emphasizing the snack positioning of fruit products, with more user-friendly packaging such as resealable stand-up pouches and small pots and trays, making them more suitable for anytime snacking,” Williams says. “There has also been growth in the availability of multi-packs of individual snacks.”
Of course, one of the biggest drivers of interest in fruit snacks remains the healthful image of fruit. Innova Market Insights says that half of all the launches it tracked in the 12 months to the end of September 2016 were positioned on a health platform. Within North America, that figure rose to more than 85% of all such launches being positioned on a health platform. More than 25% of launches used a natural and/or no additives or no preservatives positioning, and if organic claims are included, that figure climbs to more than 36%.
Nutritional Outlook Magazine