6 Snack Brands That Left an Impression This Year


Nielsen has revealed its annual Top Breakthrough Innovations list, a collection of U.S. brands that have made their mark on the marketplace over the past year. Of the 25 brands on the list, six of them are snack labels.

Chicago-based Nielsen considered 3,500 consumer products before finalizing the list. The final 25 brands have been recognized for the innovation and growth they’ve displayed in sales, endurance, product distinction and more. The list was powered by Bases, a new-product innovation service by Nielsen.

“In today’s climate, the marketplace is more crowded than ever, so the pressure to innovate is immense,” said Jenny Frazier, senior vice president of Nielsen Bases. “We know that successful innovation comes in many forms, from category-growing mega-successes to products that meet the needs of a specific type of consumer and everything in between. This year, Nielsen Bases is awarding success across all the ways we know companies create it; these 25 launches represent the best of a variety of successful strategies all companies employ. They have broken through the noise, allowing them to utilize innovation as a means to feed customer demand and desire.”

Here are the six snack brands that earned a spot on Nielsen’s Top Breakthrough Innovations list …

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Halo Top

halo top

No. 5 on Nielsen's list, Halo Top Creamery’s healthier ice cream has a firm grip on a category that is rising by the day. The total ice cream sector hit $6.6 billion in 2016, nearly a 4% increase from the previous year, according to Nielsen. Halo Top's newest variety, Halo Top Pumpkin Pie, launched in early September and is available at retailers nationwide until the end of November.

Photograph: Shutterstock



In January 2018, Siggi’s became the fastest-growing yogurt in grocery stores, according to Nielsen, which ranked the brand at No. 7. In August, the company released Simple Sides, a combination of the brand’s whole-milk yogurt and snack add-ins. Varieties included Vanilla Yogurt With Dried Coconut & Cacao Nibs, Honey Yogurt With Dried Figs & Walnuts, Vanilla Yogurt With Almonds & Dried Cherries, and Plain Yogurt With Muesli & Currants.

Photograph: Shutterstock

Oreo Thins

oreo thins

Deerfield, Ill-based Mondelez International launched Oreo Thins in June 2015 for consumers who love the taste of the classic treat but are looking for a more sophisticated cookie, the company said. The cookies earned the No. 9 spot on Nielsen's list. Earlier this year, Mondelez launched Oreo Thins in a Pina Colada flavor as part of its #MyOreoCreation contest.

Photograph courtesy of Mondelez International

Good Thins

good thins potato white cheddar

Good Thins, crackers baked from potato, rice, chickpeas, corn or oats, placed No. 10 on Nielsen's list. They'e available in a variety of flavors, such as Sweet Potato, White Cheddar and Sea Salt. They are free of artificial flavors, colors, cholesterol, partially hydrogenated oils and high fructose corn syrup. Mondelez debuted Good Thins in March 2016.

Photograph courtesy of Mondelez International

Hillshire Snacking

tyson hillshire farm sausage rolls

Hillshire Snacking, No. 13 on the list, is a subsidiary of Springdale, Ark.-based Tyson Foods Inc. The brand offers 17 varieties of chef-curated snacks in unique flavor combinations. Most feature meat-and-cheese blends including Wine-Infused Salame With Natural White Cheddar Cheese and Italian Dry Salame With Natural Gouda Cheese. In June 2018, Tyson launched Hillshire Farm Sausage Rolls, a line of grab-and-go refrigerated sausages designed for convenience retailers.

Photograph courtesy of Tyson Foods Inc.



San Francisco-based Olly PBC manufactures premium nutrition and wellness products. Its Olly brand earned the No. 14 spot on the list. One of its flagship items, Olly Protein Bars, comes in five varieties: Chocolate Coconut Chip, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Slim Boost Bar Salted Caramel Chocolate, Slim Boost Bar Zesty Lemon Creme and Protein Super Foods Bar. Olly PBC also offers multivitamins, wellness boosts, protein powders and probiotic sticks.

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