Snacking is firmly entrenched in American eating habits and will increase 14% by 2017, according to a report by the NPD Group.
Snacking has evolved from being perceived as a bad eating habit to the “fourth meal of the day.” Although snack consumption is growing across the board, it’s growing fastest among children ages 6 to 12, and declining among adults 18 to 34 and 55-plus.
Most snacking occurs in the evening, but evening snacking is declining, and morning snacking has shown the strongest growth. Fruit is the food most often eaten between meals. Most snack foods are bought at least a day before they’re eaten; only about 10% are purchased within 30 minutes of consumption.