Crisps: still vital for indies

Relaxing and watching TV on the couch while eating chips.

Crisps and snacks is still a growth category and one independent retailers are well served by

Crisps and snacks are a vital sales opportunity for retailers; 96% of people eat snacks, with 69% of those snacking at least once a day (Mintel).
The overall crisps and snacks category is performing well at a growth rate of +2.7% (Nielsen).
Shopper behaviour is key to understanding the CSN category.
There has been a decline in the traditional weekly family shop with only 28% of the UK visiting the supermarket for main shops (Mintel).
Instead, replenishment is the biggest driver and 32% of consumers visit stores for ‘top-up’ missions. 90% of UK shoppers visiting a convenience store, on average 3.5 times a week and with an average spend of £6.28 (HIM). It is therefore unsurprising that the convenience channel continues to thrive and is forecast to grow by 2.7% YOY with annual sales topping £38bn in 2018 (Nielsen).
“With consumers visiting stores more than ever before, we have the opportunity to increase sales by ensuring KP Snacks offer retailers the right product range in the right case formats, boosted with the right promotions and in-store merchandising,” comments Matt Collins, Trading Director at KP Snacks. “Off-shelf features will help maximise the opportunity to grow sales and retailers can help encourage cross-category purchases by grouping products such as snack foods, bottles of wine and beer, as well as sharing bags of crisps and nuts.”
KP Snacks is committed to helping retailers succeed within a challenging market by making all its products a compelling choice for shoppers at point of purchase, the company says. To do this, the company has made sure its brands are visible at every consumer touch point – from TV to wholesale, in-store and outdoor.
“As a business, we are passionate about insights,” adds Collins. “We know that when choosing a snack, the decision spectrum for a shopper can start at fruit and extend to chocolate as consumers weigh up the balance between health, taste and enjoyment.”
KP believes that snacks can be enjoyed as a part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle. Retailers are giving more range space for lighter alternatives to meet this need. KP has been working in improving the health credentials of its products and the way we market them for a number of years.
The KP Snacks portfolio includes 29 products that are 100 calories or fewer per pack including POM-BEAR, Hula Hoops Puft, Skips, popchips and Space Raiders. In addition, multipacks remain popular to help with portion control – 54% believe that smaller-sized packs of snacks help them to monitor calorie intake (Mintel). They are also a cost-efficient purchase.
KP also has active programmes across its portfolio which works to reduce saturated fat and sodium, as well as removing artificial sweeteners, colourings and flavourings.
The company’s existing products are already: 83% free from artificial flavours; 92% free from added flavour enhancers; 98% free from artificial sweeteners; and 100% free from artificial colours.
Big Night In
The Big Night In category is experiencing double-digit growth of +11.7% (Nielsen), consequently creating a significant number of opportunities for retailers to capitalise on sales. 48% of consumers eat crisps, snacks and nuts when watching a film at home and 51% of shoppers are more likely to visit from their local store if they offer themed promotions e.g. Big Night In (HIM).
“Stocking the right range is crucial to making the most of the Big Night In occasion, but it’s equally important to have the right promotions and displays in place to entice the shopper,” says Collins. “Retailers can help encourage cross-category purchases by grouping products such as snack foods, bottles of wine and beer, as well as sharing bags of crisps and nuts.”
The impact of weather on consumer shopping habits is huge, especially within a channel such as convenience which largely benefits from unplanned purchases. Whether it be a family night in with a few films in the winter, or a BBQ in the sunshine with friends, there are 1.7 billion sharing occasions in the UK (Mintel) and independent stores can tap into this sales opportunity by stocking up on all the essentials needed for last-minute get-togethers.
Price-marked packs have proven to be a successful tool in driving impulse sales across the sharing sector. KP’s £1 PMP range that falls within the sharing format is performing well with sales up +41.8% (Nielsen).
The bagged snacks market is the fastest growing impulse category in the UK with volume sales up +4.2% (KWPO). At 22%, Crisps and Snacks are the second largest category shoppers are purchasing on-the-go, second only to soft drinks (HIM). With the FTG sector set to grow by +46% by 2022 (HIM), crisps and snacks offer a huge opportunity for retailers to drive sales.
The most important factors to shoppers purchasing crisps and snacks on Food to Go occasions is price at 85%, brand at 77% and pack size at 72% (HIM).
Stocking the right range is crucial to making the most of the food to go occasion, but it’s equally important to have the right promotions and displays in place to entice the shopper. Retailers can help encourage cross-category purchases by grouping products such as snack foods, sandwiches and soft drinks together as these are the 3 most commonly purchased items in a meal deal.
Meal deals play an important role at lunchtime and are a key mechanic to increasing basket spend. KP’s insights show that, at 49%, the most in demand item shoppers want in their meal deal is crisps or snacks (HIM). 39% of consumers specifically want nuts in their meal deal whilst 27% look for healthier options (HIM). Although the meal deal is a key sales driver for Food to Go, the singles market, and in particular the Grab Bag, remain in growth and are value at £542 million and growing at +2% (Nielsen).
According to KP, 82% of retailers say they must stock PMPs to stay competitive; 83% of retailers say PMPs sell faster than non-PMPs; 59% of retailers say they are more likely to stock NPD with a PMP; 33% of shoppers believe PMPs are cheaper; and 57% of shoppers want PMPs on crisps and snacks.
Across the market £1 PMP ranges are growing at +15.3% versus non-PMP formats at -2.9% (HIM). PMPs provide shoppers with much needed value from the bigger eat they are looking for and offset any potential price perceptions. And whilst KP continues to increase its range of PMPs, it also continues to offer a comprehensive range of non-PMP to give retailers choice.
Demand for PMP formats remaining strong – KP’s £1 PMP range is out-performing the category by +41.8% (Nielsen) and this success can be attributed to the strength of the brands as well as presenting them in the right format. KP’s 39p PMP singles range is also growing ahead of the overall format at +29.2% (Nielsen) and includes Discos, Wheat Crunchies, Frisps and Skips.
From our portfolio of brands, KP’s range has been designed to suit a number of occasions, from lunchtime singles to adult sharing. The sharing occasion is a huge area within PMPs, currently worth £158m and growing +21.7% YOY (Nielsen).
Oven baked
Walkers is launching brand new Oven Baked with Veg, to help retailers capitalise on the growing savoury snacks category (+6.9% according to Kantar & Nielsen). The new range contains two flavours, both of which pack a spicy punch: Beetroot & Sweet Chilli, and Sweet Potato & Paprika.
The wheat, potato and vegetable snacks will be backed with significant TV support alongside the rest of the Oven Baked range in a brand new creative featuring the Spice Girls in a continuation of the partnership between Walkers and the British icons.
There is a growing popularity for vegetable chips, however the nation’s favourite crisp brand (Nielsen) has identified a gap in the market for those that are lower in fat, but still enjoyable to eat. To reinforce the taste of Walkers Oven Baked with Veg, which contains 40% less fat than regular vegetable chips, the Taste Us. Love Us. money back guarantee will run across the whole range.
Helen Strachan, Brand Manager at Walkers, comments: “There are common misconceptions about vegetable chips but our innovation, although lower in fat, doesn’t compromise on taste. We are confident that the new range will be a success and are heavily supporting the launch with a new ad campaign with the Spice Girls, meaning it will be front of mind with shoppers therefore helping drive sales for retailers during a key period for the savoury snacks category.”
The new Walkers Oven Baked with Veg is available in two flavours, across single serve (35g), multipack (6 x 23g) and sharing bags (140g).
Busy lifestyles
“As people’s lifestyles continue to get busier, many consumers now have less time to dedicate to eating sit-down meals, and are looking for more convenient ways to fill up,” comments Jon Wood, commercial director of Calbee UK, owner of Seabrook Crisps.
As a result, consumption of food on the go is on the rise. Research shows that meals have become more snack-like, with a market response to introduce more authentic food values into snacks.
“Retailers can take simple steps in order to cash in on this rise in on the go consumption, such as positioning crisps near the till can entice consumers to pick up a pack while they’re in the store for something else,” adds Wood.
Popcorn went into growth as retailers began giving it greater shelf space. Once shelf space was reduced, sales started to slow down. The same is true for healthier products and for sharing snacks and crisps. As shelf space for nuts has increased, the sales of nuts have also increased. It shows that most of the category is driven by shelf space creating sales increases.
“Seabrook is the perfect snack for convenience-loving customers looking for a quick fix,” says Wood.
The brand’s 31.8g bags are available in a range of flavours including Prawn Cocktail and Lamb & Mint, as well as traditional flavours such as Sea Salted, Salt & Vinegar and Cheese & Onion.
Its larger 80g bags, ideal for sharing occasions, are also popular within the snacking category.
The new £1 80g Crinkle Cut PMPs reflect the trend towards larger pack formats while still offering value for money, giving shoppers another reason to grab it on the way to a party.
“PMPs are a great way for retailers to drive sales,” adds Wood. “Snacking is directly linked to convenience and products must be accessible for consumers at any given time. Prominently displaying the new £1 80g bags will provide shoppers with a quick and easy purchase.”
Available through Bestway van sales, flavours include Sea Salted, Cheese and Onion and Beefy. The £1 80g bags are also listed in all Parfett’s depots.
The second of the two new PMP offerings is the £1 6 x 25g packs, available in a variety pack containing two each of the nation’s flavour favourites; Sea Salted, Salt and Vinegar and Cheese and Onion. The £1 six pack is listed nationally in Booker depots and in all Parfett’s depots.
Seabrook teamed up with Alton Towers in 2018 as the theme parks’ exclusive savoury snack partner, supported by a multimillion £ national marketing campaign that allowed the brand to reach a broader audience than ever before.
Building on the success of last year’s partnership, Seabrook is continuing as the category exclusive partner with Alton Towers Resort in 2019, offering shoppers two for one entry at the theme park worth up to £56 per pack.
Running through to September, the on-pack promotion appeals to families and young adult thrill seekers alike, offering a ‘staycation’ adventure as well as the opportunity to save money this summer. The brand is increasing TV spend in 2019 as part of the deal to ensure continued growth.
The high value offer, running across all Crinkle Cut Multipacks, 80g PMPs and 31.8g bags, provides stand out on shelf particularly among customers looking to indulge in on-the-go snacking. In a time where consumers are often bombarded with promotional overload, an offer which genuinely provides good value to the consumer will stand out among competitors.
Seabrook is supporting the on-pack promotion with a large scale marketing campaign, including national TV and radio advertising, with a particular push on social media, an area the brand has focused on significantly in recent years by regularly sharing engaging content through their channels in a bid to create positive brand engagement.
Data shows penetration is growing on the Seabrook brand, especially in areas outside of its North of England heartland, and existing shoppers are adding the brand to their basket as AWOP grows.
Inspired by Japan, Yushoi combines new flavours and textures with naturally healthy ingredients. The brand has experienced continuous growth for the past three years, up 20% YOY and worth £6.7m. Over 1.8m households now purchase Yushoi (Kantar).
“With consumers becoming more health-conscious, it’s important retailers stock a range of options,” Wood comments.
Yushoi’s baked pea snaps caters to this with naturally healthy ingredients and added nutritional value. The trend towards healthier snacking options is on the rise with the Better For You category now worth £348m and growing at 8% YOY (Kantar). Yushoi’s baked pea snaps, placed within the wider Calbee UK portfolio, meets this growing consumer need.
Suitable for vegetarians, the oven-baked pea snaps in 21g bags are a source of protein, high in fibre with 90 calories or less per serving. Made from 68% green pea, the complete range is vegetarian friendly with all flavours (except Sour Cream & Chive) suitable for vegans. Not only that, the gluten-free snacks have all green and amber GDA’s which offers a much healthier option to traditional crisps and snacks, offering guilt free snacking to health conscious consumers.
The range of baked pea snacks are available in a variety of flavours including Sea Salt & Balsamic Vinegar, Sweet Chilli with Lemon and Lightly Sea Salted. Brand new flavour Sour Cream & Chive is set to launch in July.
Yushoi will unveil new packaging in July to ensure further brand growth and development following a strong couple of years. The distinctive packaging is eye-catching and colourful with a premium look and feel to provide stand out on shelf, particularly with shoppers looking for a quick purchase.
Its modern new look, to be rolled out on Yushoi’s oven-baked pea snaps, is bold and impactful whilst communicating key product benefits and delicious flavours to the consumer.