Snacks are primarily regarded unhealthy

On September 4 and 5, 2018, snack´, a congress on the future of the snack industry, took place at the RheinMain CongressCenter in Wiesbaden. The motto: “snack for thought – between tradition, innovation and the digital revolution”. In addition to product developers, marketing managers and company founders, market researchers also came to the event to find out about trends and innovations in the snack sector.

Already the opening key note provided for tension and inspirations. The trend researcher in the nutrition sector and head of the futurefoodstudio in Austria, Hanni Rützler, raised the philosophical question right at the beginning of the event when a snack is considered a snack and when it is considered a meal. We experience: While in the past food structured people’s day, today it is work. The relevance of the individual meals shifts. For example, lunch today plays a less important role than in the past. Breakfast, on the other hand, is gaining in importance. We increasingly eat between meals.

If we look at the Snack Barometer 2018, which was carried out on behalf of the Allgemeine Fleischerzeitung, the Allgemeine BäckerZeitung and the Business Target Group in Germany among 1,200 respondents (28.5.-1.6., online survey), 36 percent see snacks as a snack between meals and a meal replacement.

MIMAS instead of snacks?

The nutrition expert also referred to qualitative studies according to which snacks are primarily associated with the association “unhealthy”. However, this is no longer contemporary, because: Snacks are also gradually becoming healthier and following certain nutritional trends, such as veganism or protein wealth. Hanni Rützler is therefore of the opinion that the term snack must be replaced by a new name and suggested MIMAS (abbreviation for mini meals) as an alternative.

About insects, in vitro meat and hummus

The second lecture by Patrizia Stitz (Management, Food Professionals Köhnen GmbH) and Rochus Winkler (Managing Partner at concept m research + consulting GmbH) also dealt with the topic of proteins. The two lecturers presented their study on the attitude of the population towards the consumption of insects. This shows a very large skepticism of humans regarding the future integration of insects into our meals.

Only 16 percent believe that insects will actually land on our plates in the future.

However, if we look at consumption worldwide, a quarter of the population already consumes insects. The authors of the study emphasized that people move away from a natural approach to the environment with age. What we love as children we later find disgusting. As an example, they added that it is normal for children to play with ants and eat them. But when we think of a cockchafer soup, it disgusts us. According to the two experts, the introduction of insects on our plates will be the same as with sushi. They assume that it will take 10-15 years before insect consumption becomes the standard. Whether we will continue to eat meat in its current form due to the high CO2 balance caused by the consumption of animals is also questionable. In addition to insects as a snack, in vitro meat was also discussed. As Nutella of the Orient Hummus is already called now. Hubertus Marquardt (Executive Chef, Roomers Frankfurt) believes that this trend will reach Germany even more, because it is a tasty, healthy food.