Snacks: The Healthy & Unhealthy Truth


At mySupermarket we are partial to a snack or two and so our analysts were eager to study the types of snacks that are being sold across the UK supermarkets and unearth interesting trends. For instance, what are the trends with ‘healthy’ or ‘non-healthy’ products? How discounted are they? Which supermarkets sell the most snacks? Let’s dive into the data and get a better understanding.

mySupermarket looked at different categories of food dividing them into healthy and unhealthy products. ‘Healthy snacks’ mostly consisted of fresh products, yoghurt, and snack bars, whereas ‘unhealthy snacks’ included crisps, cheese, biscuits, meat snacks, popcorn etc.

(Disclaimer: we recognise that there are differences of opinion regarding what constitutes healthy. For the sake of this article we have divided them into product categories that are generally considered so).

According to mySupermarket research, we found that UK supermarkets keep an average of around 3,500 unhealthy snacks in stock on a monthly basis, versus only 135 monthly healthy snacks.


So what are the most popular healthy and unhealthy products? Here are the top 10 as purchased on site.


Product Availability

So who is selling the most unhealthy snacks? That would be Tesco, followed by ASDA. Over the past year, Tesco has been averaging almost 280 unhealthy snacks on its shelves per month, while ASDA has been averaging a little over 230 unhealthy snacks per month.

On the flip side, the supermarkets that see the most healthy products are Tesco and Ocado, with a monthly average of 20 and 16 healthy snacks monthly, respectively.

As far as seasonality goes there is a rise in the availability of unhealthy snacks in the supermarkets beginning in July, with the peak in November, before the holiday season. The next trend that we’ve seen is with the availability of healthy snacks displaying a sharp rise between July and August, or the beginning of summer. See below for details of each:





Money Saving

Now that you know more about the types of snacks that the supermarkets sell, we wanted to inform you of the best places to bargain shop. Although Tesco stocks the most items at its stores, it isn’t at the top of the list for offering products on discount. The top 3 supermarkets, in order of the most products on discount, are: Morrisons, ASDA, and then Ocado (with Waitrose close behind).  The discounts include individual products with a price discount, as well as multi-buy discounts.

Here is a breakdown of the average product discounts across all supermarkets, by snack type:

Average-%-of-Products-on-Sale-by-Supermarket #2


Data analysed spans from January 2015 to April 2016 inclusive.

mySupermarket Business Solutions is a retail technology service that supports brands and categories in FMCG with a 360 degree real-time solution to make their brands shine online. We help you improve your digital knowledge to become a digital category champion.

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