Project - Cool Snacks

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Project - Cool Snacks

Development of healthy snack products for adolescents based on analysis of physical, individual, social and cultural determinants of snacking behavior.

Project start January 2009. Completion December 2012.

The project is completed.

The project’s purpose is to examine sweet and snacking habits of youths between the ages of 10 and 16 years, with regard to finding healthy alternatives for them.

The project is unique as it brings together specialists from such diverse scientific areas as Human biology, natural science and economy.

It has proved difficult to induce children and teenagers to reduce their consumption of snacks such as fries, potato crisps and of course sweets. In the fight against obesity amongst adolescents, the target of this project is that within a few years it will be considered ´cool` to snack on fruit and vegetables instead.

This is the main principle behind the scientific project ´Cool Snacks` which is one of 16 projects that has received financial backing by the committee for food and health (FØSU) lead by The Strategic science Association

The project, fronted by Professor Klaus Grunert, director of Mapp (Centre For Consumer Studies) at Aarhus University, has the task of building a knowledge database, which can be used to develop new, healthy fruit and vegetable snacks irresistible to the target group of children and adolescents aged between 10 to 16 years.

 “I’m expecting a great deal from the project, as we shall be examining every conceivable possibility to better understand how adolescents think and what factors motivate them when they chose snacks” says Professor Klaus Grunert , adding; “The project has long been a brain-child of many faculties within the university”.

The project was actually conceived in dialogue with the Faculty for Human Science, which thought it could be exciting and of relevance, uncovering the patterns controlling adolescent’s choice of snack products.  “We will specifically focus upon subjects such as; what is ‘cool` seen through youthful eyes”, says Klaus Grunert, who ponders the question why adolescents particularly regard fries and crisps as ‘cool’.

“This is one reason why a scientific project such as ours, should not cast itself over new healthy, nutritious snacks, without first having a better understanding of which factors could influence the target group to change snack behavioural patterns”

Klaus Grunert furthermore points out that the project will go far, due to the bi-lateral faculty partnerships behind the project. Scientists will, for example, examine social and physiological aspects that are of importance in determining the adolescent consumers snacking habits to subsequently cross reference these results with actual factors regarding production, logistics and marketing of these products.

The results will then be used to develop prototypes of healthy snack products, which are to be tested upon the target group through supermarket chains and snack product manufacturers. When the project is concluded toward the end of 2012, Klaus Grunert expects the way to be paved for production of Danish tasty, health conscious products capable of market breakthrough.

Participants

  • Danish Agency for Science Technology and Innovation
  • Mapp-Centre 
  • Aarhus University
  • The Danish Technological Institute
  • Gasa Greengrocers
  • Færch Plast
  • CFS Nordic A/S
  • Pack Design
  • Living Innovation
  • Supergros
  • Danish Cancer Society

During project Cool Snacks, The Danish Technological Institute will develop packing and distribution solutions that can both protect, and sell, the new snack products to young people.