how can children’s snacks stand out in this vertical field?
With the improvement of economic level and the education level of post-80s and post-90s parents, young parents also pay more attention to “healthy and nutritious snacks”. Compared with European and American countries, China’s children’s snack market is in the early stage. For a long time, there has been no unified definition and standard for children’s snacks in China.
According to the general requirements for children’s snacks issued in 2020, children’s snacks are foods suitable for children aged 3-12, which are used to supplement energy, balance nutrition or increase water content, and can relax and have a good mood; And put forward the industry requirements of “adding less sugar, salt and oil”. Domestic children’s snacks are gradually standardized.
So, how do children’s snacks need to stand out in this vertical field? What development opportunities are worth grasping?
The development potential of children’s snack market
According to the white paper on children’s snacks market survey released by China Supplementary Food Circulation Association, by the end of 2019, the number of children under 16 years old in China is 249.77 million, accounting for 17.8% of the total population. Although the fertility rate is declining, the concept of “meticulous child care” is deeply rooted in the hearts of the people, and the proportion of children’s consumption in household consumption expenditure is gradually increasing.
As an important part of children’s diet, snacks also ushered in the potential of rapid growth, children’s snack market is rising rapidly. According to the white paper on children’s snack market survey issued by China Association of complementary food circulation, the scale of leisure snack market will reach 571.3 billion yuan in 2019, with an annual growth rate of more than 6.0%, and is expected to reach 600 billion yuan in 2020; From 2019 to 2023, the children’s snack market is expected to grow steadily at a compound annual growth rate of 10% to 15%.
In contrast, in the past few decades, the domestic leisure snack market did not focus on the healthy development of children’s snacks. When it comes to classic snacks, the first things you can think of are candy, biscuits, fried puffed food and so on. This kind of snack is characterized by high sugar, high salt, high oil, low protein and so on. It only meets the taste stimulation of children, but contains low nutritional components. Excessive consumption of such snacks by children will affect the intake of staple food, and then lead to obesity or malnutrition and other health development problems.
According to the report on nutrition and chronic diseases of Chinese residents (2020) issued by the National Health Commission in December 2020, the overweight and obesity rates of children under 6 years old and adolescents between 6 and 17 years old reach 10.4% and 19% respectively. According to the chart of nutritional status of Chinese children aged 0-12 (2002-2014) released by China Nutrition Society in November 2018, Chinese children aged 0-12 are facing the problem of malnutrition. The low weight rate, growth retardation rate and emaciation rate of Chinese children aged 0-5 are 2.5%, 8.1% and 2.0% respectively; The main manifestation of malnutrition in children aged 7-12 was mild emaciation, accounting for 9.4%.
On the one hand, it is the rising market scale; on the other hand, it is children’s diet health problems and consumption upgrading demand. In the context of domestic economic development, more and more parents begin to pay attention to snack health.
Children’s snacks in foreign markets
Looking at the foreign children’s snack market, the main players are Nestle, Pepsi Cola, Yizi, kafheinz, general mills and other international food giants; In terms of product form, there are mainly dairy products such as oat grains, yoghurt or cheese, dried fruits and vegetables, non fried puffed food, nutrition sticks and so on. Foreign snacks highlight product differences from the following three aspects:
The first is to upgrade the nutrition. They mainly focus on high protein, low sugar, whole grain, organic, gluten free, etc. for example, chobani gimmies focuses on high protein and low sugar; Kind’s children series focuses on organic and whole grains; Hippeas focuses on “super food chickpea”, “organic” and “plant protein”; Good Go û T focuses on “natural”, “organic” and so on.
Chobani, a leading yogurt brand with an annual turnover of over US $1 billion in the US market, launched chobani gimmies series at the end of 2018 to lay out the children’s snack market, focusing on high protein and healthy labels. Chobani gimmies products include yoghurt and biscuits, which create product differentiation with interesting packaging design, high-quality ingredients (more protein content, lower sugar content) and multiple consumption scenarios. Among them, tubes of yoghurt can be frozen, and the sugar content is 25% less than other products of the same style, which can be used for students’ lunch; Biscuit crunch has twice the protein content of other products.
Founded in 2004, kind, a healthy snack brand, is one of the fastest growing brands in the snack industry in the U.S. market. It focuses on nutritional and healthy raw materials and does not use artificial sweeteners or sugar alcohols. In August 2018, kind launched a series of kids bars children’s nutrition stick products specifically for children, with flavors such as honey oatmeal, peanut butter and chocolate crispy. The main products are 100% whole grains, 25% less sugar, no gluten, no artificial colors or flavors or preservatives. In addition, the products will also emphasize low sodium, low fat, no genetically modified ingredients, etc., in order to emphasize the nutrition and health of raw materials.
Like chobani and kind, hippeas, which was founded in 2016, also focuses on “high protein”, just plant protein. Hippeas is in line with the trend of “plant nutrition”. It uses chickpea as the super food to make puffed food. The main products are organic, high protein, high cellulose and low calorie. It is more in line with the dietary requirements of modern people for calorie control. In January 2021, hippeas received another $50 million in financing, compared with $22 million previously.
Best selling good go in Europe û T is a French children’s snack brand, which entered the Chinese market in 2019. Its main products are natural and organic. Its main products are chocolate biscuits, honey nut sticks, seaweed crisp, etc. Good Go û T products have passed the European Union organic certification and the French national organic certification. The ingredients are from the global organic farms. The products adopt the sugar reducing formula, and the sugar content is reduced by 30%. The processing method can maximize the freshness and nutrition of the products.
The second is healthy processing. Some brands create brand differences and “healthy snacks” through less and healthier processing.
Healthy snack brand bar snakes doesn’t focus on children’s snacks, but its healthy processing and ingredients make it a great children’s snack. Barre’s main products include baked fruit chips (apples, bananas, coconuts, etc.) and vegetable chips (beets, carrots, etc.). The main products are simple baking, no sugar, non frying, gluten free, fat free, vitamin rich, gluten free, vegetarian standard, etc. In 2018, Pepsi Cola acquired Barre snakes.
The third is more convenient or interesting packaging. In addition to nutrients and processing forms, the packaging form and form of products can also attract children’s attention. For example, chobani gimmies series adopts children’s packaging design; Imagine snakes’ cheese is crispy and star shaped to attract children.
In November 2018, Pepsi launched imagine snakes, a healthy brand of children’s snacks. Its main products are yogurt chips and cheese, which are high in protein, calcium and grains. And the product adopts the interesting form of star shape to cater to children’s preferences.
Domestic children’s snack market A631
It’s still in its early stages
Compared with the national consumption demand, the development of children’s snack brand in China is relatively backward.
It is not until the first half of 2020 that Chinese snack giants liangpinpu, baicaowei and three squirrels have launched the sub brand line of children’s snacks: liangpinpu “xiaoshixian”, baicaowei “Tongan children”, and three squirrels “xiaolulan”.
Of course, in recent years, there are also some new brands are developing. Such as baby greedy, do cat cat, Dr. cheese, etc. In February 2021, new hope also launched a new brand of children’s snacks “xiangpa planet”, which specially added probiotics, blueberry anthocyanins, DHA algae oil and other nutrients for children’s growth and development.
Founded in 2020, Dr. cheese, a cutting-edge brand, ranks among the top 10 of tmall food’s cutting-edge brands in 2020 with its high-quality cheese products. Dr. cheese’s main products are Xiaoyuan low salt and high calcium cheese, platinum cheese stick, cheese crispy, cheese stick, cheese beans, daily cheese nuts, etc.
In packaging, Dr. cheese adopts independent small packaging and whole cold chain to keep fresh and nutritious ingredients active. In the packaging design, Dr. cheese also uses bright yellow, cute cartoon IP image, and even links with “cat and mouse” to set off the delicious cheese.
For Chinese consumers, cheese is relatively unfamiliar, so in terms of brand marketing, Dr. cheese is constantly educating the market, such as the nutritional value of cheese and what is high-quality cheese. In the process, Dr. cheese has also built consumer trust.
In May 2020, baicaowei launched the “Tong’an children’s snacks” brand, targeting children aged 3-12. The product ingredients include DHA, prebiotics, protein, calcium and other nutrients, and the addition of oil, sugar and salt is reduced. Sugar containing products are replaced by sugar free, less sugar or natural sugar.
The current products of Tong’an children series include dietary fiber Hawthorn slices, daily nuts, baby rice cakes, Crispy Shrimp cakes, etc. In terms of packaging design, “Tong An’an children” uses warm colors, interesting cartoon images and “children’s words” to increase the brand’s interest and interaction with children’s consumers. However, the exploration of baicaowei in children’s snacks is still relatively traditional, which is still in the stage of catering to children’s sweet taste, and there is still a lot of room for improvement in nutritional composition.
Baobaochanle, founded in 2016, has a monthly sales of nearly 100 million yuan in 2021, which is 30 times higher than that in 2019. In February 2021, baobaochanle obtained over 100 million yuan a and a + round financing from Tiantu investment.
The company has built its own food laboratory and cooperated with more than 30 factories. In terms of product composition, “baby greedy” chooses natural ingredients without chemical addition; The products include baby complementary food conforming to complementary food standards, and children’s snacks paying special attention to health, including strawberry biscuits, fruit and vegetable cheese crispy, seaweed sandwich crispy, hawthorn square cake, fresh shrimp slices, yogurt powder, baby puff, organic linseed oil, etc.
However, just like the product of “Tong’an children” of Baicao flavor mentioned just now, there is a huge room for improvement in the nutritional composition of the product, and there are many possibilities for upgrading the nutritional composition.
Domestic children’s snack brand
What opportunities are worth seizing?
Through the observation of brands at home and abroad, it is not difficult to find that children’s snacks in China are still facing the problems of serious homogenization and insufficient nutrition. So how to enhance the “product power” to develop the domestic children’s snack market According to Lingtu new consumption, children’s zero food brand can focus on the following aspects:
1. Product nutrition
Children are in a critical period of growth, need to supplement certain nutrients to ensure the healthy development of the brain and body. Therefore, children in this stage need more professional and more targeted nutrition
- Upgrading of raw materials: focus on organic food materials, select nutrition food materials, use high protein food materials, such as peas, chickpeas, etc
- Additional high-quality nutrients: such as DHA, probiotics, trace elements
- The formula is less sugar, artificial sweetener and artificial pigment
3. Product taste
- In the form of food: the use of more convenient to eat form, such as made into a nutrition stick anytime and anywhere to supplement energy
- In the packaging specifications: small packaging to meet the children’s habit of eating at any time