What’s in Your Easter Basket?
Hop to it: It’s not too late to shop for a better-for-you Easter basket
With Easter right around the corner many Americans are gearing up for a big family celebration. According to Packaged Facts’ “Food Gifting in the U.S.: Consumer and Corporate” report, those celebrating Easter last year spent an estimated $18 billion on products including candy, gifts, food and flowers, with $152 spent per celebrant. Food and candy comprised more than $6 billion of consumers’ Easter spending.
For those of us with young children, the Easter basket is an eagerly-anticipated tradition. Every year children awake on Easter morning to see what the Easter Bunny has brought for them.
This tradition actually dates back thousands of years. The Easter Basket ritual has its origins in the German folklore of the Easter Hare. According to a German legend, a white hare would leave Easter baskets filled with candies, brightly colored eggs and other goodies for kids to enjoy on Easter morning.
Given that Americans are planning to avoid sugar and eat more sustainably this year (according to our recent survey of American consumers) we wondered how that trend would affect what’s included in the average Easter basket. Is it realistic for Americans to shop for traditional treats, yet still stick with their resolutions? With this in mind, we set out to uncover “better-for-you” alternatives to traditional Easter treats.
Of the more than 13,635 products in the "candy" shelf, only 236 candy products contain a “Low,” “No,” or “Reduced” sugar claim. This is an opportunity for brands targeting parents who wish to avoid or reduce sugar consumption across their families.
Today’s parents are also paying close attention to the ingredients being included in food products. In particular, millennial parents are forecast to keep the organic product market growing, according to the Organic Trade Association. In fact, a recent survey of consumers found that millennials (17%) are nearly twice as likely as Baby Boomers (9%) to point to more organic food and product options as the most important change brands and retailers could make in 2018. We found more than 500 candy products that have natural claims and around 400 that make organic claims or are organic certified. We expect to see more Easter baskets filled with organic goodies this year.
Want to build a “better-for-you” Easter basket but have no idea what to include? Fear not - we identified products that are natural, organic and have no added sugars, based on our ingredient analysis:
- Matt's Munchies Grape Premium Fruit Snack
- Annie's Organic Fruit Bites - Cherry Apple
- Little Duck Organics Tiny Gummies 100% Real Fruit +Probiotics
- Full Circle Wildberry Fruit Twists All Natural Real Fruit Snacks
- Full Circle Strawberry Fruit Twists All Natural Real Fruit Snacks
Our verdict on our brief foray through the candy aisle? While there are some “better-for-you” candy options available, there is still opportunity for brands. As families place more importance on purchasing items that are lower in sugar, organic, or even products that comply with a specific diet, brands must continue to meet those demands through new products, greater transparency and informative labeling. Savvy manufacturers - and retailers - will help close the gap between product supply and consumer demand.
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