KANSAS CITY — While new breakfast options continue to proliferate on menus and on supermarket shelves, ready-to-eat cereal is still a morning mainstay.

Ninety-six per cent of U.S. consumers typically purchase cereal during their grocery shopping trips, 41% of consumers buy two boxes of cereal per shopping trip and 19% buy three or more, according to Shopkick, a shopping rewards app that surveyed more than 43,000 consumers about their cereal habits in February.

Shopkick also revealed that 50% of consumers make their cereal purchase decision based on flavor over nutritional value (18%), price (17%) and children’s preference (15%).

Cereal manufacturers such as Post Holdings, Kellogg Co. and General Mills, Inc. brought an onslaught of innovation to market in 2019 as they fought to be the brand on the boxes in consumers’ carts. To lure consumers focused on flavor, the companies unveiled unique offerings with flavors based on snack cakes, candy, ice cream and even chicken and waffles.

For example, Post announced on Nov. 13 that it had partnered with Hostess Brands, L.L.C. to bring the Twinkies brand to the cereal aisle. New Post Hostess Twinkies cereal, slated to hit shelves in late December, replicates the taste and oblong shape of the golden-colored snack cakes and contains 180 calories and 16 grams of sugar per 1-cup serving.

"In developing a cereal version of the iconic Twinkies, our top priority was focused on delivering the great Twinkies flavor in each bite," said Josh Jans, brand manager of cereal partnerships at Post Consumer Brands. "Knowing that taste remains the No. 1 purchase driver of cereal, we conducted multiple consumer tests, and the new Twinkies Cereal delivered. We think fans will find that it not only tastes great with milk but also outside the bowl."

View slideshow of new cereals released in 2019.