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Dec, 17 2016

A HEALTHY TURNAROUND

From an occasional indulgence to a fourth meal, snacks have come a long way since their inception. In recent time, a lot of radical changes are seen in the snacking industry which has attracted many start-ups. Let’s explore how these startups are winning...

India’s high-growth snacks market can be attributed to rising urbanization and increasing per capita income as the country develops. These changes have led to busier lifestyles, higher disposable income and a morphing food culture.

The consumers have started demanding a good meal replacement while running late and as a party staple. As snack manufacturers look to tailor offerings to deliver snacks that appeal to both the palate and the psyche, knowing what drives a consumer to pick one snack rather than another is vital to stay competitive in the $374 billion worldwide snacking industry.

What’s trending

Potato chips are the bestselling snacks in India.However, preferences for this same snack vary widely across the region.

Research has found that northern and southern Indians prefer spicy flavours while western and eastern Indians have shown preference to tomato and cheese flavours.

Such varied tastes and preferences have resulted in a large and highly diversified Indian snack market. Hectic lifestyles have led to the need for convenience and packaged healthy snacks are an apt solution.

Adding ‘health’ factor

Snacks do not have a good rap as they shoulder some of the blame for eating habits that can contribute to health issues.

Resisting the urge to reach for a burger, candy or chips when you’re hit with a snack attack can make a big difference in your health — regardless of your age. In addition, the manufacturers care very less about the health of their consumer. “I was roaming in the country meeting people who are into making snacks, they told me this very bluntly that you can fry a snack or you can go through a powder treatment and the customer would never know that if they are fried or roasted. This experience and my research made me believe that healthy snacks are so much required in India,” says Devang Shah, Founder, FabBox.

“Our mission at Fabbox is to create super yummy snacks to beat those entire fried and unhealthy snack available in the market,” he further adds. Start-ups like Delight Foods are catering only to the regional specialties where healthy measure is rarely executed, “We offer regional Indian speciality products, sourced from the origin, fresh and pure. All of the products we have, we offer best taste and quality promise,” shares Ramesh Krishnamurthy, Founder and CEO, Delight Foods.

Marketing with right packaging

Evidently, packaging is a critical aspect for the marketing and sales strategy of snacks in India. Different packaging forms and designs can influence purchase decisions and help snacks manufacturers gain a significant share in this fast-growing industry. The gas-filled pouches provide protection for brittle snack products such as potato chips while the preservatives added are not a healthy reconcile. “Instead of using large amount of preservatives, we identify ingredients with a higher natural shelf life (Oats, Dates, Honey, Dryfruits, nuts) and nutritional values,” says Arul Murugan, Cofounder, Snackexperts.

Pricing Insights

Health factor has always brought along higher prices for the products.Sourcing all the raw stock in higher quality demands to go a mile extra, which slightly increases the price of the final product. “At the beginning I honestly didn’t know who is going to buy this product. However, many youngsters are becoming health conscious these days. The people who want a healthy life are my target customers,” says Shah. Shifting radically with the industry, people who are health conscious do not take a second thought before shredding a few bucks more for their better life.

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