Mars Launches SNICKERS-Branded Protein Bar

Energy bars are booming, with the subcategory contributing gross margins of 49.49% for c-stores last year.

December 15, 2022

NEWARK, N.J.—Mars is introducing a SNICKERS-branded protein bar called Hi Protein. The bar tastes like a traditional SNICKERS bar but includes 20 grams of protein and four grams of total sugar, the company says.

"Mars is consumer obsessed, and after talking with many consumers through the product development process, it was clear that the performance nutrition category was missing one key ingredient—delicious tasting products," said Michelle Deignan, senior brand director, Mars Wrigley. "With the demand for delicious tasting protein bars increasing, SNICKERS Hi Protein bars are guaranteed to be a hit whether you work out avidly, casually or are looking for a delicious snack with more protein."

SNICKERS Hi Protein bars will be available at select retailers beginning January 2023, with the product set to be available nationwide later in the year. SNICKERS Hi Protein will be available in a single-size (2.01 oz) bar.

From energy bars to puffed veggies and spicy meat sticks, convenience store shoppers are loving their alternative snacks.

“In 2021, the category exceeded all prior years in sales and showed really strong sales in nearly every month,” said Jayme Gough, research manager, NACS, in a recent NACS Magazine article. “This category is a staple for travelers looking for a savory treat, a morning commuter purchasing a snack for later or a dried-meat enthusiast. As more people get back on the roads and start to go back into the office, this category is ripe with opportunity.”

Alternative snacks contributed an average of $2,797 in sales per store, per month in 2021, and had a gross margin profit of 45.40%. The health/energy/protein bars subcategory contributed better gross margins at 49.49% than the alternative snacks category.

Earlier this year, Mondelēz International announced that it would acquire energy bar company Clif Bar for $2.9 billion.

“This transaction further advances our ambition to lead the future of snacking by winning in chocolate, biscuits and baked snacks as we continue to scale our high-growth snack bar business,” said Dirk Van de Put, chairman and CEO of Mondelēz International.

Clif is a category leader in alternative snacks in the convenience channel, with an ACV (all commodity volume) of 80.7% and a nearly 13% increase in sales in 2021, according to NielsenIQ Total U.S. Convenience data.