Presenting at the 2012 National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) Leadership Forum, the NACS vice president of research Dae Kim delved into the importance snack sales play to this retail market. Kim noted the per-store sales of snacks (candy, salty, sweet and alternative snacks) stood at roughly $2,500 in 1975 but were a stalwart $13,500 in 2010. And, “while snacks draw about 10% of c-store trips, snackers dominate impulse sales (accounting for about 35%).”   
Snack Attack

While snacking remains a significant factor in sales, salty snacks have drawn stern criticism, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has high hopes of reducing the sodium levels in the American diet. However, as even the CDC has noted, salty snacks like pretzels and chips are not the primary reason nine out of 10 Americans consume too much salt daily. In fact, bread and cold cuts are the top two sources of sodium. It is not that these contain more salt than other foods, but that consumers eat more of these items. Nevertheless, the CDC is recommending consumers look for breads that contain less than 150mg per slice and low-sodium deli meats.

Salty snacks account for 3.1% of all sodium Americans consume. The CDC offers similar advice to consumers looking for a salty snack but trying to limit their sodium intake: Compare nutrition labels, as the amount of sodium from one brand of chips to another can be as much as 150mg. pf