Snacking and the Super Bowl: Victory formation for snack marketers
Each year, the Super Bowl scores a touchdown for the snack industry, altering consumer purchasing behavior during the week leading up to the big game. If last year's snack sales are any indicator, this year will be no different. In 2017, American consumers purchased over $370 million worth of savory snacks during Super Bowl week, a 20 percent increase from the week prior, according to IRI data.
No Super Bowl party is complete without dips. The refrigerated and shelf-stable dips categories posted $37.5 million in sales, an increase of 43 percent from the previous week. Consistent with previous years, that jump in sales represents the largest net increase of any food category. With more fun and creative dips taking center stage of the party spread each year, tortilla chips have benefitted the most of all savory snack categories. With over $104 million in sales during Super Bowl week, the tortilla/tostada chips category increased by 35 percent as a result of pregame shopping, compared to a smaller but still significant 17 percent increase for potato chips.
In preparation for the boom in snack sales during the NFL playoffs, snack manufacturers must prepare for increased production far in advance. For snack companies with a strong presence in certain regions of the U.S., the sales lift during the postseason is greatly affected by whether that region's team is in the playoffs.
According to Dan Sifer, SVP Supply Chain and Contract Manufacturing for Herr Foods, Nottingham, PA and SNAC International Chairman, "football themed displays are used all season, but Herr's uses almost as many during the playoffs as the entire regular season." With the hometown Philadelphia Eagles vying for their first Super Bowl win in franchise history, that means Herr Foods is also deep into a playoff run of their own.
"The Super Bowl is big no matter what, but when your team is in it, it becomes a national holiday. We'll need the Eagles to make it to the Big Game again next year to match our sales for this year," said Sifer. "We've been preparing for this increase in production weeks before even the first playoff game kicked off nearly a month ago."
HARD-HITTING SNACK STATS
Trucking the competition: During Super Bowl week last year, Americans purchased enough savory snacks to max out over 1,000 18-wheel trucks (over 80 million pounds). Of all the savory snack categories, potato chips "trucked" the competition with over 53 million units sold for a total of $116 million.
Quarterbacking the Snack Category: Last year in the week leading up to the Super Bowl, Americans purchased 26 million pounds of potato chips. That is over 1,000 times the total weight of the Philadelphia Eagles' and New England Patriots' entire teams -- combined.
No Dip in Sales: In the week leading up to the Super Bowl, the DIPS category took home the Lombardi trophy with a 43 percent sales increase versus the week prior. In total, $37.4 million were spent on dips in preparation for the big game.
Dips' Best Friend: The $104 million worth of tortilla/tostada chips that Americans purchased during Super Bowl week last year totaled approximately 29 million pounds, which is the equivalent of 26 million 18 oz. bags. That's enough bags to stretch the length of over 125,000 football fields!
Stay tuned to find out how many snacks were purchased for Super Bowl parties around America this year. The Super Bowl remains one of Americans' top snacking holidays, competing with Memorial Day, The 4th of July and the holiday season. And that presents a great opportunity for snack marketers to "punch it in for 6 points."
Source: SNAC International