Consumers’ Thirst for Salty Snacks Soars

Styling and Photography by Laurie Mosco

2020 turned us all a little salty – or at least where snack cravings are concerned.  Salty snacks sales were up 14% for the year according to Nielsen, with 58% of consumers snacking more than they were previously.  So far for 2021, this new snack order is here to stay.

Customers want to be a-salted with that salty flavor, but at the same time are looking for something a little outside the snacking norm. In fact, 40% of younger consumers say they are more likely to try a snack option if it’s new, according to Progressive Grocer. You know what time it is – time to shake up your salty snack selection.  Here’s how.

Salty Classics Elevated

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Consumers’ friend-chip with the OG of salty snacks, the potato chip, will never crumble.  It’s no surprise that potato chips sales were up 60% last year, according to Fox News. So, mix the classic with the modern by adding slightly elevated options of the standards they love.  Our headquarters is on Long Island, so we have a soft spot for anything local like North Fork Chips.  Long Island grown potatoes are cut extra thick and kettle cooked for a crunch that’s a cut above the rest.  Add to that the finest ingredients like real molasses, paprika, vinegar, sea salt, and sour cream, and the classics like BBQ, salt and vinegar, and sour cream and onion, take on a new dimension of flavor. Of course, we’re partial to anything with sea salt – we’re on an island, after all!

Another craft chip company elevating favorites and creating new ones is Deep River.  Deep River ups the crunch factor by cooking all their chips in small batches in sunflower oil.  The chips are also made with no artificial ingredients, creating flavor destinations like Maui onion, salt and cracked pepper, zesty jalapeno, and rosemary and olive oil that customers will happily visit.  As their slogan says, Deep River also really “give a chip®” which social customers will appreciate. Each Deep River chip bag is used as a platform to highlight non-profits across the country and the company donates 10% of their profits to these charities and others.

Not a Chip Off the Old Block

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While consumers are seeking salty snacks, they also want better-for-you options. According to Progressive Grocer, 35% of salty snack fans increased their snacking based on the availability of healthier options.  Among those healthier options gaining popularity are high protein snacks like WILDE Chips.  The finest cuts of chicken breast sliced paper thin, coated in tapioca, and fried in coconut oil for a crunch that rivals any potato chip, while offering that punch of protein to power them through the day. Adventurous flavors like Nashville Hot, Himalayan Sea Salt and Buffalo Chicken, will have customers going WILDE.

Another better for you snack type continuing to gain traction – plant-based snacks. For customers with a salty, plant-based craving, offer Heaven & Earth’s range of vegetable chips.  Flavorful, fiber-rich root veggies like earthy beets, mild and nutty cassava (Yuka) or taro satisfy that crunchy munchy craving while offering a better-for-you alternative to potatoes. Vegetarians and carnivores alike, all agree these are some taste-tempting chips.

According to Nielsen, another top craving among the better-for-you salty snack crowd is rice cakes. Break out of the ordinary and give them a rice cake alternative that really pops like SkinnyPop Popcorn Cakes. Savory, salty flavors like sharp cheddar and classic sea salt presented in a poppable chip-like shape packed with fiber gives customers the perfect pop of flavor and crunch without breaking their diet.

Our sea of salty snacks has something to float everyone’s boat

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