Americans’ tastes haven’t changed in a year in terms of candy trends.
That means that the same candy items that sold well in 2022 — chocolates of all sorts, gum and mints, gummies and jellies, hard candy, licorice, novelty candy, and cannabis edibles — will ring registers in 2023. And of course new products will always generate consumer interest.
Another trend — a big one — will be that non-chocolate candy will continue to be hugely popular among convenience store shoppers. Brands such as Skittles, Sour Patch Kids, Jolly Rancher, Charms, Twizzlers and more have made major gains over the past several years, and the trend is not about to suddenly reverse in 2023.
Stats from IRI showed that in calendar year 2022 shoppers wanted more non-chocolate candy than ever: non-chocolate chewy candy sales were $2.2 billion, up 13.9%. Hard sugar candy/package and roll candy saw sales of more than $264 million, a 12% gain. And novelty non-chocolate candy noted sales of almost $169 million dollars, up 55.4%.
Many health-conscious consumers are also choosing raisins over pretzels or marshmallows, and the reason is clear. Raisins are rich in antioxidants and provide extra fiber that won’t come from chocolate alone.
Another trend to be seen in 2023 is that size will continue to matter. Consumers are tending to go for the smaller portion sizes instead of big bars, perhaps for health-conscious reasons.
At the same time, consumers might go for chocolate that contains nuts because the nuts may displace some of the total chocolate and sugar. Sugar-free chocolate sales and better-for-you candy sales have also been on the rise.