PepsiCo/Frito-Lay: Women Need More of Our Snacks

Frito-Lay, a subsidiary of PepsiCo has figured out just the thing women need more of.

Not fruit, not exercise, not water.

You guessed it – snacks:

Last month the US firm launched its first snack – Smartfood Popcorn Clusters – targeted specifically at women.

Following their premise that the majority of women snack more than men, [PepsiCo] said at the time of the roll out that it seeks to cash in on an estimated $650m in additional sales from women consumers.

John Compton, CEO of PepsiCo Americas Foods, presented the ‘smartfood popcorn clusters’ in the context of PepsiCo’s move to ‘Introduce new products for her’.

Listed by PepsiCo in the general criteria for ‘new products for her’ are: make it convenient/portable, ‘help me control my portions’, ‘take away the guilt’, ‘take out the negatives’, make it nutritious, and make it taste ‘great’.

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What you need to know:

We took a look at the nutrition label of the Cranberry Almond SmartFood Popcorn Clusters to see how smart this snack is.

First, the ingredient list: Cranberries are listed as the #10 ingredient in the list, and almonds are #3, although their placement on the packaging is much more prominent. The #1 ingredient is Brown Rice Syrup – a type of sugar. Popcorn is only the 4th ingredient, just ahead of – sugar! Wasn’t the rice syrup enough?

The nutrition panel is actually OK. Each serving is only 120 calories, and packs 5 grams of fiber through the addition of chicory root to the fiber in popcorn. The 10 grams of sugar are equivalent to 2 teaspoons of sugar, and contribute only 40 calories. And, squarely aiming at women, this product has 20% of the daily value for calcium.

All in all, this snack seems reasonable compared to other greasier, sweeter, fattening alternatives that PepsiCo manufactures.

What to do at the supermarket:

If you have tried out this new snack, we’d love to hear your take on it. Is such a small serving filling enough? How does it taste? Would kids and men like it too?

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