Study reveals significant rise in almond use within the snacks sector

The latest study from Innova Market Research has found that almonds retain the number one spot for product inclusions in Europe across food ranges including confectionery and bakery markets.

According to the organisation’s global new product introductions survey, the region holds 47% share of global almond introductions, which has remained constant for the eleventh year running. Europe as a whole saw a total of 5,017 new introductions with almonds – a 14% increase on the previous year. Germany, France and UK follow the US as the top leading countries in Europe, with 2,414 new almond products introductions collectively in 2017.

As the research group noted, almond introductions in the snacking and bars categories have shown a continued pattern of growth, with a rise within the snacking category of 32% , and the bars sector up by 53%. Almond introductions grew in four out of the five key categories for almonds worldwide, with confectionery top of the category in the EU, making up 27%.

The demand for almonds can also be attributed to their role as natural, nutrient-rich ingredients with appealing taste and crunch and extensive versatility as well as their consistently safe, stable supply.

“As consumers seek out products that offer on-the-go, clean label, convenience and nutrition without sacrificing on taste, manufacturers must identify ingredients to stand out in competitive categories,” said Dariela Roffe-Rackind, director Europe & global public relations. “The unmatched versatility of almonds means they can help manufacturers innovate to meet demands of the current and next generation of consumers. California almonds are safe, sustainable and have a relatively long shelf life, adding to the attributes manufacturers are looking for.”

“It’s also really encouraging to see Europe continuing to drive innovation in new product introductions, as well as playing such a progressive role on a global stage.”

Innova’s Global New Products Report also highlighted the top claims used on packaging of products with almonds globally, noting that “gluten-free” was the top claim used (24%). Following trends and consumer demands for clean label products, claims of “no additives/preservatives” were the second most used on almond product introductions globally, communicated on 15% of almond products. In a nod to almonds’ well-known texture, “crunchy” was used as a descriptor significantly more frequently than other texture claims on almond products.

“With free-from and clean label products now so mainstream, we frequently see almonds’ attributes named on packaging,” said Lu Ann Williams, Director of Innovation, Innova Market Insights. “For example, we see a high use of gluten-free claims on almond bar products when compared to the general product category. In fact, over 56 percent of almond bars feature gluten-free positioning, compared with less than 46 percent for the category as a whole.”

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