Snacking Habits Growing After Rising Work From Home

-Ayshwaria Lakshmi

Snacking industry has seen growth as the demand for finger snacks rise. With workloads increasing and just wanting to snack on the way without getting hands dirty, the demand for a healthy and hygienic snack has surged, said Aswins Sweet and Snacks, Managing Partner, Mr Aswin Ganeshan.

“This demand is a contribution to lesser cooking and more preference towards traditional varieties of snacks. People have become cautious of what they are eating and want to eat. For instance, they want jaggery instead of processed sugar,” said Aswin. He also added that frozen and ready-to-cook foods are also on rising. The market is always adapting to a preference for lesser oily foods. But the enjoying of snacking has grown a lot in recent years, pointed out Aswin.

“For instance, Shwarma was a food but now it has become a quick easy and a hot instant snack,” pointed out Aswin on the evolving of the industry. He also added that people are willing to try something unique and are ready to spend money and time to find it. There many who also take it up as a task to advertise it, the influencer market. On the traditional snacking, he said “A fusion of Modern and olden style is what is growing. In Halwa, people are opting to replace Karupati jaggery in the present recipe.”

He further added the recipes are from the modern style with traditional ingredients mixed in. The industry has various others in trend like air frying instead of oil frying, a fusion in cuisines. There is a well-known and famous trend, the Indian market currently has is the fusion of Indian cuisines with European or Mexican.

“Beyond this, we have another famous one, the cheesy trend. Preference towards cheesy foods has grown in huge numbers. It a trend that took place without us knowing it was happening. We have many new collaborations of foods with cheese,” said Aswin. Having established in 2003 as a small-scale industry, Aswin’s Home Special Sweets and Snacks, restaurants now have subsidiaries across Perambalur, Trichy and Chennai. Aswin’s was an establishment started by Aswin’s mother. Most of the recipes are from her and the motto of Aswin’s is to keep it as simple and traditional as possible.

Some of the well-known products are Athirasam, Thatai and many more. They have about 700 varieties of snacks. With health as the primary concern, the snacks are prepared and delivered the same day. Coming from a Tier 3 region, Mr Aswin added that their primary customers from the region prefer more traditional snacking and their exploration towards newer ones are close to none. Whereas Tier 2 and 1 are more open to exploring.

“Even a few days back, I met with a customer who requested nearly 10 traditional snacks. He wanted his younger generation to taste those,” added Mr Aswin.

He also added that the establishment is trying to fit in the customer market preferences in the store. The problem, no enough shelves or the adaption in the states takes time. He points out that introducing TN is a difficult task and more importantly in the Tier 3 cities.

“We had introduced white chocolate brownie just prior to the lockdown and right now, we are not able to move forward with the product because of the pandemic. Our introduction line has been put on hold due to the pandemic. We have also stopped many of our product manufacturing and worked with only 50 percent of our workforce. We currently produce on the fast-moving products,” said Aswin.

Aswin’s lost about 20 percent of their income during the pandemic. The business saw a spike in snacking for about the first three months during the lockdown last year. To address this, the establishment had created a Snack truck to take the products to residential areas. Mr Aswin added that this initiative had added good revenue to them. On a suggestion to healthier eating the Managing partner said, “People avoid oily foods in the name of healthier eating. This is just bad marketing done by brands. What we need to do is, eat more regional foods that suit our body conditions and surrounding better than opting to eat only the western-influenced. Taking the right food in the right way is much healthier than we think. I do not condemn against opting for tasting different foods, we need to but we need to increase our regional consumption along with it,”

The establishment has about 23 outlets and there are no expansion plans as of now till the pandemic gets over, he concluded.

ADVT: Best wishes to Aswins sweets from ‘Malligha’,  From the house of M.A.C ( details and free samples in the HoReCa segment, contact: +91 9943441147

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