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A whole craze for Whole Grain snacks

Snack companies rushing to catch the Whole Grain bandwagon

By Jeremy Selwyn
Chief Snacks Officer

03.14.2006

It wasn't long ago that you had to go to Whole Foods to find a snack that was even remotely Whole Grain. Now the mainstream snack companies are rushing to get whole grain snacks onto store shelves. Here at Taquitos.net's headquarters, we've been inundated lately with samples of new whole grain (and multigrain) snacks.

First Shearer's sent us three varieties of whole grain tortilla chips: plain yellow corn, Cheezy Nacho flavor and (best of all) Black Bean & Salsa flavor.

Then Snyder's of Hanover made it a trend by sending some Multi-Grain Tortilla Chips.

Herr's kept it going with their Whole Grain Pretzel Sticks.

Next Old Dutch pushed the craze to new heights when they sent us their Multigrain tortilla chips in two different shapes: bite-size rounds and triangles. (Reviews are coming soon.)

Analysis: The bottom line here at Taquitos.net is always how enjoyable the snacks are to eat. Health claims mean nothing to us if the snack is inedible. Generally, the whole grain chips have been good, but not as crisp as conventional tortilla chips. Multi-grain chips also suffer from the crispness problem, but depending on the mix of grains, you do sometimes get more flavor from the mix of grains.

Compared to the dreadful products linked to the Atkins dietary craze a few years back, the new snacks have been quite good. But the crispness and grittiness will hurt these products' mass appeal. I doubt that the mainstream whole grain trend is here to stay. The craze will peak at some point, and whole grain will return to being a niche market for the healthy food crowd, with few whole grain snacks in conventional supermarket snack aisles.

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