Specialty spread get some love

The Lempert Report
August 15, 2014

Move over PB&J’s, America is falling in love with specialty spreads

Everything from nut butters, upscale cream butters, hummus to chocolate are tantalizing the taste buds and leading the growth of spreads at U.S. food retailers.  

With so many options tempting consumers today, spreads have become a fun, easy way to ingest protein without having to cook, not to mention their portability and lightweight suit snacking occasions, and their versatility makes them meal companions as well.   

According to Mintel, it was the hot pace of new product innovations that drove 34% growth in the nut-based and sweet spread category to $3.9 billion between 2008 and 2013.  More innovations in ingredients, flavors and multiple uses will drive another 65% sales increase to $6.5 billion between now and 2018, the research firm forecasts.

The concept of combining indulgent tastes and textures with health benefits, could also prove successful with shoppers. Mintel also notes that 55% of consumers want more nut-based and sweet spreads with benefits such added vitamins or antioxidants, 47% want spreads with health claims, and 36% want varieties without additives or preservatives. 

With consumers developing a taste for specialty spreads supermarkets might do well to promote these products while at the same time, sharing tips and information on the various health benefits of each.