- General Mills Convenience & Foodservice's Consumer Insights team released a new report outlining seven snacking trends and the opportunities they present for convenience stores.
- Many of these trends are apparent throughout the industry, such as exotic and multicultural flavors, foods high in protein and natural fats, fresh foods, transparent packaging, mini packages, and snacks as meal replacements.
- One c-store specific trend was "Make It Mine," which suggests that c-stores offer customizable specialty beverages, made-to-order foodservice, and/or a toppings or condiments bar.
Fresh foods, nutrient-rich foods, and mini-packaging all spring from the consumer health trend. Consumers are looking for better-for-you foods and beverages, expect more functionality from these products, and now tie their diet more directly to their health and well-being. Once a consumer makes the decision to buy products they understand as healthier, manufacturers and c-store retailers adapt to remain competitive.
In terms of product development and positioning for c-stores, manufacturers can also take into account a previous report from General Mills, which detailed four distinct consumer groups who shop at c-stores. Aligning a snack product with these trends to target a consumer group, like "breakfast barons" or "meals and more," could enhance sales potential in this retail channel.
General Mills has taken part in these snacking trends with products like Larabar and Nature Valley snacks being common options available at c-stores. But General Mills has also provided suggestions for shelf space organization that c-stores can apply to drive sales, such as separating breakfast items from indulgent treats.