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Sweet Biscuits, Snack Bars and Fruit Snacks in Latin America

February 2021

Sweet biscuits, which still dominate overall sales, have been experiencing an unexpected spike in demand in 2020 with consumers looking for treats and tasty snacks during periods of home seclusion due to Coronavirus (COVID-19). Fruit snacks were continuing to see growth in 2020, appealing to consumers looking for convenient and healthy snacks. However, protein/energy bars and fruit and nut bars were going into reverse in 2020 as people had less call for on-the-go products.

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Key findings

Sweet biscuits act as treats for homebound consumers

Sweet biscuits, which dominate overall market sales in the region, were enjoying a sales spike in 2020, with more consumption occasions moving into homes with people locked down or quarantining and working/learning remotely. This was helping drive the overall market performance in 2020, after growth rates had dipped into negative territory in a number of years during the historic period.

Snack bar sales set to rebound

Snack bars had been recording disappointing performances in recent years, which did not change in 2020, with a drop in demand among consumers for on-the-go snacks during the pandemic. However, sales will rebound from 2021, particularly for protein/energy bars, which had already been recording dynamic growth prior to 2020, with fruit and nut bars also set for strong growth. Protein/energy bars were also being hit by the closure of gyms and fitness centres during 2020.

Fruit snacks benefit from health trend

Fruit snacks are products that fit very well with the burgeoning health trend in Latin America. They offer consumers convenient naturally healthy snacks, with further growth expected as health and wellness becomes ever more important.

Healthy growth rates expected

A 2% CAGR is expected over 2020-2025. Snack bars and fruit snacks will record more dynamic 4% CAGRs, but the more mature sweet biscuits will also register a positive 2% CAGR over the forecast period. New legislation is expected to be approved in 2021 by ANVISA in Brazil for new labelling in a traffic light format, indicating low (green), medium (yellow) or high (red) content of potentially harmful nutrients, such as sugar. Similar systems are either already in place or in the pipeline in other Latin American countries. This could put pressure on players in the region to develop more low-sugar or all-natural products in this market.


Key findings

Regional Overview

Latin America the only region globally recording a declining sales CAGR
Growth spike in 2020 expected to be maintained in the following years
Dynamic growth for protein/energy bars over the historic period
Overall market still largely marching to the tune of sweet biscuits
Mexico generally the main growth driver across the categories
Pick-up in the market performance during the pandemic in 2020
Independent small grocers still the main distribution channel
E-commerce records very strong growth in Latin America in 2020

Leading Companies and Brands

Concentration in most of the region’s countries
PepsiCo continues gaining ground in Latin America
Mondelez has the greatest spread in its presence across the region
Most of the top 10 brands continue to gain share

Forecast Projections

Sweet biscuits to enjoy sustained impetus from the 2020 sales spike
Sweet biscuits will drive growth, despite being least dynamic

Country Snapshots

Argentina: Market Context
Argentina: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Bolivia: Market Context
Bolivia: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Brazil: Market Context
Brazil: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Chile: Market Context
Chile: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Colombia: Market Context
Colombia: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Costa Rica: Market Context
Costa Rica: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Dominican Republic: Market Context
Dominican Republic: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Ecuador: Market Context
Ecuador: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Guatemala: Market Context
Guatemala: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Mexico: Market Context
Mexico: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Peru: Market Context
Peru: Competitive and Retail Landscape
Uruguay: Market Context
Uruguay: Competitive and Retail Landscape


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