ROCKVILLE, Md. — Traditional breakfast staples such as bacon, eggs and sausage have experienced slight to moderate declines in usage as consumers increasingly choose portable options that are perceived as healthier, said market research firm Packaged Facts. Still, the data suggest Americans aren’t abandoning their beloved battered fare. Sixty percent of US households use pancake and waffle mix, and 48 percent choose frozen varieties of waffles, pancakes and French toast.
Consumption of frozen waffles, pancakes and French toast has remained steady in the past 10 years, with a modest decline noted from 2014 to 2015, according to Packaged Facts. These options remain appealing to consumers seeking affordable and relatively convenient breakfast items.
“Moreover, industry players are developing packaging formats to increase portability,” Packaged Facts said. “Nevertheless, as is the case with mixes, the frozen category hasn’t been completely immune to the gluten-free trend. Packaged Facts found that those watching their diet because of gluten intolerance are 15 percent less likely to use these frozen breakfast items.”
Meanwhile, busy lifestyles have given rise to such portable options as breakfast bars, breakfast sandwiches, supplements and energy bars, while less convenient choices, including eggs, bacon and sausage have seen slight to moderate consumption declines, and ready-to-eat cereal has faced even steeper declines.
“Today’s consumers seek simplicity on their approach to breakfast,” said David Sprinkle, research director, Packaged Facts. “They want no fuss, no drama, no confusion, and no time wasted.”
Manufacturers are positioning new breakfast products as easy to make and consume on the go. Tyson Foods has launched a new line of Jimmy Dean microwavable stuffed hash browns in such varieties as meat lover’s, sausage and cheese, and bacon and veggies, designed to be eaten with one hand. The success of Mondelez International’s belVita breakfast biscuits has prompted the launch of similar products from such brands as Nature Valley, Nutrigrain, Quaker, Honey Bunches of Oats and SnackWell’s. Kellogg Co. is introducing Special K Crustless Quiche varieties, which are prepared in the microwave and feature such ingredients and quinoa, asiago and kale.