Foodservice Equipment Reports

Snacking Behaviors Differ By Market

Everyone snacks, but not everyone does it the same way. A new study of consumer between-meal eating and drinking patterns analyzes the differences in five rapidly growing foodservice markets. The NPD Group study, International Food and Beverage Habits in Brazil, Russia, India, Mexico and China, charts a wide array of food and foodservice behaviors.

In the U.S., consumers snack at three different times during the day, while in Brazil and Mexico there are only two, mid-morning and late afternoon. The reason is both societies eat their evening meals around 8 p.m. Russia, India and China also have three snack periods.

Where consumers obtain food for snacking also varies. The Chinese are more likely to obtain food from restaurants for snack occasions, compared to the other four developing markets. In the U.S., consumers rely heavily on foods sourced from retail outlets and vending.

Fruit is the most frequently consumed snack in all the markets except India, where cookies and other sweet baked goods are preferred.   

“The frequency, timing and nature of meal and between meal occasions throughout the day are the building blocks for developing a strategy for positioning food and beverage products for the BRIMC countries,” says Ann Hanson, executive director, product management for NPD, the author of the study.

Information on the study is available from NPD Group is a U.S.-based consumer research firm. The research firm’s foodservice practice is based in Rosemont, Ill., in the United States.

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