Snyder's-Lance loading up on health

by Eric Schroeder
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Late July organic chips, Snyder's-Lance
Late July is one of Snyder's-Lance's brands fitting into the better-for-you category.

NEW YORK — Snyder’s-Lance, Inc. has a desire to be a company with an expansive “better-for-you” portfolio. The company’s acquisition of Diamond Foods, Inc. earlier this year has helped further that cause.

In a May 18 presentation at the BMO Capital Markets Farm to Market Conference in New York, Rick D. Puckett, executive vice-president and chief financial officer of the Charlotte, N.C.-based snacks maker, said the Diamond Foods acquisition boosted the percentage of better-for-you products in Snyder’s-Lance’s portfolio to 32% from 29%. As recently as last fall, company executives had only about 27% of the portfolio pegged as better-for-you.

Citing data from Information Resources, Inc., Mr. Puckett said about 16% of consumers preferred better-for-you snacks in 2015, a percentage that is expected to grow to 18% in 2017 and 22% by 2020. That puts Snyder’s-Lance ahead of the curve when it comes to addressing this emerging trend.

Rick D. Puckett, Snyder's-Lance
Rick D. Puckett, executive vice-president and c.f.o. of Snyder's-Lance

“We think it’s a very important future growth opportunity for us, and we’re not done at 32%,” Mr. Puckett said. “We believe that could be even higher. But it does grow across all of our core brands. You might not think that sandwich crackers could be a better-for-you product, but when you make them in a gluten-free kind of manner they are considered better-for-you.”

Late July is a brand fitting into the better-for-you category, Mr. Puckett said.

“It’s pretty much 100% organic and it’s sold in Whole Foods and all of the other natural channels,” he said.

Snyder's Lance gluten-free sandwich crackers and pretzels
Snyder's-Lance has seen success in the better-for-you marketplace with its gluten-free sandwich crackers and pretzels.

He also pointed to gluten-free pretzels that the company introduced a few years ago that have found success in the marketplace.

“They actually passed the No. 1 player in that space in a matter of nine months,” he said. “So we were able to get to the No. 1 position in gluten-free pretzels in about nine months once we initiated that launch.”   
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