Snacking in America has become big business and dips and spreads represent a large part of it. According to the Nielsen report “Snack Attack: What Consumers Are Reaching for around the World,” global snack sales totaled $374 billion annually ending March 2014—an increase of 2%* year-over-year, according to Nielsen retail sales data. Europe ($167 billion) and North America ($124 billion) make up the majority of worldwide snack sales, with sales flat in Europe, and growing at a rate of 2% in North America, compared to the previous year. The snacking trend, coupled with the new American desire to eat healthy shows why hummus tops the list as the number one snack dip and is still climbing in sales. Salsa is down slightly while guacamole spikes during the Super Bowl.
The perceived health advantages of hummus and its versatility make it the number one dipping choice within the fresh dip category for American snackers. The sales trend of the Mediterranean favorite was exceptional over the past decade as a growing number of consumers were looking for a healthy and nutritious spread which is easy to make. The chickpea-based spread comes in a large variety of flavors to cater the gourmet-minded consumers. The ethnic-inspired dip generated retail sales amounting to almost 700 million U.S. dollars in 2014.
Packaging hummus with fresh vegetables or pita chips makes sense for food producers that want to capitalize on these trends through their retail customers. As more supermarket and c-store shoppers look for healthy and quick snacks throughout all dayparts, spreads and dips, and especially hummus, represent a potential favorite.
Hummus sales amounted to almost $700 million is 2014 (source: www.statista.com)
Forty-three percent of consumers purchased refrigerated hummus in the six months ending October 2014 (source: Mintel)
Forty-six percent of consumers purchased refrigerated dips in the six months ending October 2014 (source: Mintel)
Americans consumed approximately120 million avocados in the week leading up to the Super Bowl, up 21 percent from 2014 (source: Haas Avocado board)
Shelf-stable salsa sales 2012 - $1.7 billion, refrigerated salsa sales 2012 - $1.8 billion. Shelf-stable salsa sales 2014 - $1.5 billion, refrigerated salsa sales 2014 - $1.7 billion (source: www.statista.com)
Muhammara is a hot pepper dip originally from Aleppo, Syria, found in Levantine and Turkish cuisines. The principal ingredients are fresh or dried peppers, usually Aleppo peppers, ground walnuts, breadcrumbs and olive oil. It may also contain garlic, salt, lemon juice, pomegranate and spices such as cumin.
Industry experts see high potential in muhammara as more and more consumers search for flavorful, plant based dishes that are a good source of protein in order to meet their nutritional needs.