BUSINESS

Sweet and savory snacks are food industry’s driving force

DIMITRA MANIFAVA

TAGS: Food, Business

Could chips, cookies and croissants constitute a field of fertile investment opportunities both inside and outside of Greece for local companies? Data show that – not just in Greece but around the world – sweet and savory snacks are the driving force of the food industry.

Snack sales have never dipped in Greece, even during the years of the economic crisis, as was the case with dairy products. Savory snacks alone enjoy an annual turnover of some 90 million euros, while the market’s global turnover is estimated at over $115 billion – projected to exceed $133 billion by 2021.

According to figures compiled by IRI researchers, snack sales last year at Greek supermarkets increased 6.3 percent year-on-year, which was the biggest annual increase after that recorded in the frozen food category. In the first nine months of this year, snack sales turnover expanded by 4.5 percent and sales volume increased by 6.6 percent on an annual basis. Notably, a large share of sales is not conducted through supermarkets, but at smaller points of sales, such as kiosks, minimarkets and newsagents.

The results of the “State of Snacking” survey were made public a few days ago, by Mondelez International, better known in Greece as the owner of Pavlidis chocolates. The survey found that 59 percent of adults globally prefer to eat more small meals during the day instead of the traditional three big ones. This rate rises to 70 percent for people born between 1980 and 2000.

It is therefore understandable why Chipita, one of the biggest Greek food companies doing business beyond the country’s borders, is active both in sweet and savory snacks. Another Greek-owned giant, Coca-Cola HBC, followed up the acquisition of chips company Tsakiris in 2004 with the buyout of Serbian snack company Bambi, while Kriton Artos was earlier this year acquired by the Dubai-based SwitzGroup.

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