Major food companies are making hefty profits meeting the increased demand in the U.S. for snacks that include Doritos, Cheetos, and other popular chips.
A CNN Business report found that snack sales in the U.S. are expected to reach $170 billion in sales in the next few years while about 42 percent of Americans are obese, according to the latest data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention.
The food industry is used to making money by making us fat with highly processed, high-calorie junk foods. The report noted that sales of supermarket staples Doritos, Ruffles, PopCorners have jumped by double digits in the second quarter of the year.
CNN identified the cause of the sales jump due to increased food prices in general, and the fact that more Americans are emerging from their homes after COVID.
Some customers said they enjoy the simplicity of these items that they can eat while on the go. Late-night snacking has also been seen as a growing trend. Mondelez, the food giant, conducted a survey that found 64 percent of the consumers across the world prefer to eat several snacks during the day rather than sit down for a traditional meal.
The report was released about a week after researchers from Florida Atlantic University’s Schmidt College of Medicine found a tie between consuming too much ultra-processed food and severe mental health issues.
Study Finds described “ultra-processed” as food that is ready to eat right out of the package.
Heart and Stroke California said these foods go through “multiple processes (extrusion, molding, milling, etc.), contain many added ingredients and are highly manipulated. Examples are soft drinks, chips, chocolate, candy, ice-cream, sweetened breakfast cereals, packaged soups, chicken nuggets, hotdogs, fries and more.”
Pasta, nut butter, and canned vegetables are all examples of this type of processed food, according to NutritionStripped.com.
“The ultra-processing of food depletes its nutritional value and also increases the number of calories, as ultra-processed foods tend to be high in added sugar, saturated fat, and salt, while low in protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals,” Eric Hecht, one of the corresponding authors wrote, according to the Study Finds report.
TRENDPOST: “Quick food,” “fast food,” “snacks” and “frozen dinners” all translate to “unhealthy foods.”
The Study Finds report noted that more than 70 percent of packaged foods in the U.S. is considered to be “ultra-processed.” The average American consumes these foods for about 60 percent of their daily food intake.
The Trends Journal has noted the social costs of obesity: lowered life expectancy, the cost of treating diseases and conditions (such as diabetes and heart disease) brought on or exacerbated by poor diets, and the cost of lowered productivity; see “FAT CHANCE FOR GOOD HEALTH” (11 Aug 2020).
And now, in the age of COVID, we see that being overweight/obese is one of the primary “pre-existing conditions” that make people particularly vulnerable to COVID-19; see “COVID-19 & OBESITY: THE MORE YOU WEIGH, THE WORSE OFF YOU ARE” (9 Mar 2021) and “JUNK FOOD VS. COVID-19: THE WINNER IS?” (26 Jan 2021).
Lockdowns have contributed to the obesity crisis among young Americans. The CDC found that obesity among children and teenagers nearly doubled during the first seven months after the COVID outbreak took hold.
TREND FORECAST: The effects of America’s and other nations’ addiction to processed, low quality, junk food will continue to take its toll.
If, indeed, it is true that you are what you eat, is America’s low spirit, diminishing self esteem, lack of dignity, absence of energy and drive to elevate to higher emotional, spiritual, physical and political levels directly tied to the massive amounts of highly processed, chemically laced, artificially colored/flavored food they eat and drink?
Therefore, at this time, there is no trajectory to suggest a change in the Ready to Explode trend line until a new wave of self-consciousness and self-confidence captures the American spirit.
However, trends are born, they grow, mature, reach old age and die. While the Ready To Explode trend is rapidly expanding, there will be ups and downs in its growth trajectory … both personally and nationwide. Clearly, numerous opportunities exist for OnTrendpreneurs® to design/provide products and services to assist the overweight and obese who will not lose weight, and for those who want to lose weight.