The popularity of protein bars amongst adults continues to be high with just over 4 in 10 (41%) adults claiming to have purchased previously.
However, this figure has dropped somewhat from the 46% who claimed to have purchased in 2017. Recent research on behalf of Retail Intelligence by Empathy Research, amongst a nationally representative sample of 1,000 adults aged 18+, sought to identify how behaviour in relation to protein bar consumption may have changed over the year, and which brands are being purchased most frequently.
Fulfil is the brand in the category exhibiting the highest growth in purchase, with almost half (46%) of those who have ever purchased protein bars purchasing from this range, rising from 33% in 2017.
This overall increase in purchase has led to an increase in the proportion of protein bar buyers who now claim that Fulfil is the bar they purchase most often, increasing from 25% in 2017to 33% this year. In keeping with last year’s findings, the purchase of Fulfil bars is driven by females (41%) and those aged 25-34 (54%), with support from those aged 18-24 (43%).
However, there appears to be some work to do for brands in the category to convince potential customers to enter. The key barrier of entry to the category for those who have not yet bought a protein bar, but could see themselves doing so, is uncertainty over the benefits of protein bars, with almost 4 in 10 (368%) citing this as a concern.
The perceived expensiveness of protein bars (36%) and uncertainty in relation to the taste of protein bars (32%) also play contributing factors in non-purchase to date. Almost a quarter (24%) who claim they might purchase a protein bar in the future claim they currently prefer to eat more natural forms of protein.
For more information into purchase behaviour in the protein bar and supplement category, please contact Robbie Clarke at Empathy Research.
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