walkers crackers

PepsiCo is ramping up its presence in the baked savoury snacks market with the launch of a crackers range under the core Walkers brand.

The launch comes as interest in baked snacks booms, with The Grocer revealing earlier this year that take-home sales of crisps had been overtaken by non-potato snacks such as savoury biscuits for the first time [Kantar Worldpanel 52 w/e 1 February 2015]. Meanwhile, sales of the core Walkers potato crisps have fallen 4% - or almost £20m - in the past year [Nielsen 52 w/e 3 October 2015].

The new Walkers Crackers range rolls out on 23 November and comprises crunchy wheat and potato Crispy Crackers, and wheat-based Melty Crackers (both rsp: £1.49/130g). Crispy Crackers will be available in Cheddar Cheese and Salt & Vinegar flavours, while Melty Crackers will be offered in Sour Cream & Onion and Sweet Chilli.

The supplier said crackers were one of the fastest-rising parts of the savoury snacks market, and represented 22% of total growth [Nielsen].

“Walkers Crackers opens up a new sales opportunity for retailers to introduce snack crackers to a wider audience,” said Walkers marketing director Thomas Barkholt.

The supplier is backing the launch with a “substantial” marketing campaign including TV ads and in-store shopper activation.

Businesses including United Biscuits and Mondelez have launched savoury snacks in the past year, and Walkers rolled out Sensations Crispy Thins in June.