Snack Food Sales to Dip During 2020 Before Seeing Longer Term Gains


Cleveland, OH, June 12, 2020 — US demand for snack food is forecast to grow 2.7% yearly in nominal terms through 2024, according to Snack Foods: United States, a report recently released by Freedonia Focus Reports. New product offerings featuring healthier profiles or factors such as novelty and nostalgia for childhood snacks will drive demand. Population growth and rising disposable personal incomes will also underlie advances. However, market maturity and ongoing concern over the nutritional content of snacks will continue to curb additional demand growth.

For 2020 in aggregate, demand is expected to grow at a slower pace than it otherwise would have due to the COVID-19 pandemic as the economic impact forces consumers to become cautious spenders. During the early months of the pandemic, increased snack food purchases were observed as people ate more snacks while confined to or working from home and in some cases stockpiled snacks, supporting demand. However, various commercial businesses (e.g., amusement parks, movie theaters, sports venues), and institutions (e.g., colleges) and offices – where snack foods are sold in vending machines – were closed for some considerable period of time in 2020, hampering sales. In addition, many consumers are exercising caution in spending (e.g., trading down to less expensive products) for home consumption due to economic uncertainty and loss of employment. Furthermore, many consumers are ordering groceries online, limiting opportunities for impulse buying in stores. The increase in working from home also reduces opportunities to stop in convenience stores located in gas stations or busy intersections to purchase snacks.

These and other key insights are featured in Snack Foods: United States. This report forecasts to 2024 US snack food demand and shipments in nominal US dollars at the manufacturer level. Total demand and shipments are segmented by product in terms of:

  • chocolate and chocolate confections
  • corn chips and other salty snacks
  • nuts and seeds
  • cookies and crackers
  • potato chips
  • non-chocolate confections
  • dried produce
  • chewing gum

To illustrate historical trends, total demand, total shipments, the various segments, and trade are provided in annual series from 2009 to 2019.

This report excludes dairy-based snack foods such as cheese, frozen novelties, ice cream, and yogurt. Dried meat snacks such as beef jerky in addition to certain baked goods such as cakes, pies, and other pastries are excluded as well. Re-exports of snack foods are excluded from demand, shipment, and trade figures.

More information about the report is available at: