By: Jennifer Childers | Data Analyst

On October 14th a McLane team consisting of myself, Jennifer Childers-Data Analyst, Dawn Letson-Category manager over Snacks, and Lindsey, a CCI Analyst, reviewed the 8ft Cookie/Cracker/Alternative planogram with the vendor/broker community. Those in attendance were: Kellogg’s, General Mills, Promark, Crossmark, Acosta, Mondelez and A C Central.

Together, we took a deep look into trends of the overall category and broke it down into segments. IRI, Nielsen, and McLane data were all represented in the discussion, and most were in alignment. The review included cookie, cracker, breakfast bars and snack bars. We proceeded to use this information to adjust the planogram. We did pull and plugs for “low” performing items as well as those that may still be seeing supply issues. The overall goal was to create a POG that would keep our customers’ shelves full and help grow the category with a stronger mix.

To start the day, we discussed the state of the category. Crossmark and General Mills were in alignment on the last 52-week trends. When we look at dollars the category is up 11.5%, broken down to subcategory, Cookie/Cracker is up 133.2% and Alternative Snacks is up 6.5%. Taking the data another step further, Crossmark broke it down by segments; Cookies, Crackers, Treat Bars, Breakfast Cereal Bars and Granola Bars.

Cookie/Cracker holds the largest share at 75% of total dollars with this value also including Nutritional, which we discus next. As so many of these items have seen price increases it is not surprising to see dollars growing. We leaned into the unit data.to find the category down 2.4%. The subcategories break out as follows; Cookie/Cracker down about 1% and Alternative down 8%.

This category has a couple of different day part shoppers. Hershey pointed out that the breakfast day part is outpacing other day parts with a continued growth of 7.3%. As life seems to be returning to normal, post COVID, more and more customers are coming back into the c-store for their breakfast.

Lastly, we discussed the merchandising of this set and not much has changed as for the strategy of where to place items in the set.

We will continue to lead with Cookie/Cracker on the right. The treat bars could stand to be moved up in the set based on their strong performance. However, that poses a challenge to the Alternative Snack segment in that it would be buried along the bottom. So, for now it will stay to the right. Breakfast should remain on the top left to draw the breakfast shopper who stopped in to get grab a quick coffee.

Nutritional

We also reviewed Nutritional on this day. Below are the keynotes from the category conversation.

Total Category (according to Crossmark):

  • IRI last 52 weeks: Total category is up both in units and dollars. Dollars are up 13.4%.
  • IRI last 26 Weeks: Total category is up 10% in dollars and down 1% in units.
  • The protein segment leads the category and is responsible for the growth in units.

Data Broken into Segment (according to Crossmark):

  • Protein is up 20% in dollars and 8% in units. This segment, once consisted largely of bars containing 30 grams of protein, has shifted a bit. Now the segment is largely made up of bars with 10- and 20-gram bars. Protein holds a 62-63% share of the category.
  • Energy is up 1% in dollars and down in units. 16% share.
  • Wholesome bars are up 9.8% in dollars and 1.2 in units. 15% share.
  • Weight management is largely declining as it is down 7.5% in dollars and 17% in units. 5% share.

View the most recent Cookie/Cracker/Alternative POG.

View the most recent Cookie/Cracker/Nutritional POG.

View the most recent Nutritional POG.