Millennials want to smell the source of their savory snacks, says Kerry

By Gill Hyslop

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Savory snacks Olfaction Taste

Millennial snackers consider aroma essential and want their snacks to evoke immediate sense of the origin of its main ingredients.

Kerry recently conducted a survey to understand what Millennials want from their snacking experience.

Ciara McCabe, consumer insights manager, Kerry Europe & Russia, was at Snackex, held in Vienna, Austria, in June, to present the survey results.

The company interviewed around 1,000 male and female respondents between the ages of 18-35 years, all purporting to be devotees of savory snacks, across five key markets – the UK, Germany, France, Spain and Poland.

What do Millennials want?

“Ultimately, we know that Millennials in these countries are looking for three key things regarding snacks – authenticity, a sensorial playground and health,” ​she told BakeryandSnacks.

When respondents were asked to list what authenticity comprised, 60% said it was made of simple ingredients; 44% said it was ingredients for which they knew the origin; and 43% noted ‘authentic’ meant natural ingredients.

 “We know that the word ‘natural’ is a very subjective term, but when we delved through the research, we found it meant snacks that are closer to the source,” ​said McCabe.

One respondent wrote: “It should consist of natural ingredients and the ingredients would come from controlled organic farming … I would feel great after I have eaten this snack because it is healthy.”

Ciara McCabe
Ciara McCabe

“Aroma was really called out as an important insight and one of the key things Millennials are looking for when it comes to snacks.”

Involving all five senses

Millennials second most important criterion is the need for what Kerry has termed a ‘sensorial playground’ – “playing with all five senses and not just taste on its own,”​ said McCabe.

Millennials are looking to stretch the boundaries with regards to savory snacks. They are looking for new and different flavors, new texture experiences and, most importantly, aroma.

“That smell that instantly hits you as soon as you open the bag. Not eating food with your eyes, but food with your nose,”​ said McCabe.

“Aroma was really called out as an important insight and one of the key things Millennials are looking for when it comes to snacks,”​she continued, noting that respondents were looking for smells that are ‘natural’, ‘strong’ and those that bring to mind a specific environment.

The story behind the snack

"My snack would be a jumbo packet of crisps, with different flavors inside the one big family pack. I would enjoy eating it at night with my children. All the crisps would be soft, of different shapes, sizes and flavors. They would be strong tasting with a strong smell. And after we had finished eating our bellies would be full and taste buds satisfied,”​ noted one respondent.

“Seaweed flavour crisp [that] would be tasty and healthy.I would eat it in the afternoon as a snack.  The texture would be crispy and smell of the sea,”​ said another.

Win within the snacking space

“How compelling and emotive is that kind of language and how inspirational is it for us at Kerry to be able to use those types of stories to create new and innovative flavors,”​ said McCabe.

“I think generally consumers are looking for new and various experiences so the more we can really do to stretch the boundaries in terms of smell and taste, the more compelling our snack solutions will be.”

Millennials snacking Choreograph
Pic: ©iStock/Choreograph
​Kerry takeaway:

  • 64% of consumers eat snacks on-the-go
  • 29% of consumers are willing to pay more for novel snacks
  • Half of Millennials are looking for snacks that will grab their attention
  • 77% of consumers’ snack weekly
  • 65% of consumers would like to see more snacks that will keep them fuller for longer
  • 45% of Spanish consumers are interested in low-calorie snacks
  • 44% of European consumers are interested in snacks with world flavors
  • UK consumers are interested in snacks made with familiar ingredients
  • 1 in 5 Europeans eat vegetable crisps
  • 7 in 10 consumers stick to their favorite snacks
  • 63% of Europeans feel it is important to know the origin of their snack ingredients.

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