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Unpacking the South African snack market

By Lara Sidersky - Head of Chocolate at Mondelez International





Snacking has garnered a reputation in the last few years, with chips, sweets and chocolates being the ‘bad boys’ that tempt you to cheat on your diet. But the truth is it doesn’t have to be a guilty pleasure that you need to hide. In fact, snacking plays an important role in your diet and comes with a multitude of health benefits.


Whether sweet or salty, snacks help provide crucial energy and a pick me up during the day between meals. Some say it can also help prevent you from overeating. This is why snacking has become a critical part of people’s days: research has shown that more people are moving away from eating three main meals and increasingly snacking throughout the day. We have earmarked this trend as a growth opportunity as 75% of global consumers snack daily. Young people in particular routinely forego traditional meals for snacks.


This is backed up by Innova Market Insights’ research, which found that snacking is a definitive occasion in people’s day-to-day lives and is so much more than just an optional extra. The research showed it is a central focus of innovation across all food and beverage categories, with 10% average annual growth of global food and beverage launches with a snacking claim over the past five years.


Snacking made right

At Mondelēz International, it is our mission to empower people to snack right. This means we are always striving to deliver a broad range of delicious, high quality snacks, made with sustainable ingredients and packaging that consumers feel good about. Our iconic consumer brands are known and loved all around the world. And our advantages and new long-term strategy of ‘Snacking made right’ positions us to be well known as the global snacking leader.


This is why we believe in mindful snacking. As a growing trend in South Africa, market research company IRI South Africa found that the rise of on-the-go snacking solutions, combined with an increase in awareness of the importance of health and wellbeing, has resulted in a shift towards more nutritious snacking. Globally this is a trend that has seen us implement a range of innovations to our existing products such as 30% less sugar added to our Cadbury Diary Milk brand in India and the introduction of Oreo Thins in Europe.


Finding the balance

Snacks can broadly provide the nutrients, vitamins and general mood boost your body requires, and snacking on the right quantities is an easy way to ensure you get what your body needs. In fact research has actually shown that chocolate can the risk of depression four-fold, reduce the risk of strokes, lower cholesterol and help prevent diabetes, among others.


At Mondelēz International, we understand the need for more permissible snack options. Our share bag, for example, is the perfect bite-size snack that is just the right portion size and most importantly for the South African market, shareable.


This shareable element combined with good pricing strategies, offer consumers great value for money specifically around this time of year. Value is a strong proposition for South African’s during these tough economic times, we often find that even in tough times people are still willing to save up for their favourite snack or treat. With Cadbury Diary Milk as an example, people know just how many blocks of chocolate are in their favourite slab and are very conscious of this when shopping.


That is what creates those beautiful sharable moments that excite us as a business and drive us to innovate and continue to be competitive within the market. Through our Snacking Made Right mission, we are always committed to ensuring that consumers have the right snack, for the right moment, made the right way.

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