- Hershey is taking another step forward into the snack and healthy products businesses with the upcoming regional launch of its SoFit brand, which includes fruit and protein squeezes, snack squares, and nut and seed packets. Consumers can already find SoFit products on Amazon.
- SoFit joins Hershey's other efforts in these arenas, including the recently debuted Brookside fruit-and-nut bar line as part of the Brookside chocolate brand, and Krave jerky, which Hershey bought last year.
- Hershey plans to allow SoFit to start small with its regional rollout and operate as a standalone entity, Business Insider reported.
"With the company planning to acquire and develop more in-house snack brands, Hershey's venture into the healthy-snack market has just begun," according to Business Insider.
Hershey isn't the only company joining in on the expansion of healthy product lines. Mondelez is also committed to generating half of revenue from snacks perceived as healthier, as compared to one-third of revenue right now, and is dedicating 70% of new product development efforts to healthier products over the next five years.
Many major manufacturers, from General Mills and Kellogg to Campbell and Nestle, are focused on clean labels and removing artificial ingredients. Hershey made its own similar announcement in February and introduced Hershey's Kisses and milk chocolate bars without artificial flavors in time for the 2015 holiday season.
These moves don't mean Hershey is moving away from confections altogether, as consumers still regard candy as an indulgence, even when they're focused on healthier foods. Mars Chocolate North America president Tracey Massey told Fortune in July, "We’re a treat. We’re not a food. We’re not a meal. We’re a treat and consumers like to treat themselves."