Back-to-College Spending

According to the National Center for Education Statistics fall college enrollment in 2010 was 21.0 million. Enrollment declined to 20.2 million in 2014 but is projected to increase to 20.9 million in 2017. Today’s market size shows the total amount spent on back-to-college items by students and their families in 2010, 2014 and 2017. The figure for 2017 is projected. In 2017, back-to-college shoppers plan on spending the most on electronics ($12.8 billion), followed by clothing ($8.0 billion) and snacks and other food items ($7.5 billion). Spending on dorm and apartment furnishings came in fourth at $5.9 billion. Spending on school supplies ranked seventh at $3.9 billion.

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2010, 2014 and 2017 projected
Market size: $45.88 billion, $48.48 billion and $54.18 billion respectively
Sources: Smith, Ana Serafin, “Back-to-School and Back-to-College Spending to Reach $83.6 Billion,” National Retail Federation Press Release, July 13, 2017 available online here; U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics, “Table 303.10. Total Fall Enrollment in Degree-Granting Postsecondary Institutions, by Attendance Status, Sex of Student, and Control of Institution: Selected Years, 1947 through 2025,” Digest of Education Statistics: 2015, December 2016 available online here.
Original source: Prosper Insights & Analytics

Bubble Gum

Today we look at the market for bubble gum and in particular the estimated value of sales of bubble gum in the U.S. domestic market this year.

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2012 estimate
Market size: $206.9 million
Source: Andrew Adam Newman, “Change Comes to Playground Funny Papers,” New York Times, November 30, 2012, page B3.
Original source: Euromonitor International
Posted on December 7, 2012

Gluten-free Foods

Gluten is a protein found in various cereal grains, most notably wheat. This protein makes for the elastic texture of dough. It is also a protein that must be avoided by those with celiac disease, a condition which seriously interferes with the body’s ability to absorb nutrients. An in-depth epidemiological study whose findings were published in 2003 found that one in every 133 people in the United States suffers from celiac disease. Celiac disease sufferers and their immediate families are a natural market for gluten-free foods and the food industry has been increasing the number of gluten-free products on the market at a rapid pace in recent years. Those gluten-free offerings include bread, cookies, crackers, breakfast cereals, and cake mixes.

Today’s market size is the estimated size by value of the gluten-free market in the Untied States.

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2011
Market size: $6.3 billion
Source: Keith O’Brien, “Beat the Wheat,” The New York Times Magazine, November 27, 2011, page 50, available online here.
Original source: Spins, a market research firm.
Posted on November 30, 2011

Chewy, Juicy, Gooey Candy Market

Most of us think of candy as, well, candy. But within the industry, of course, candy is divided up into segments and tracked carefully. One of those candy segments is called the “chewy candy sector” and includes such things as gummies, jelly beans, Twizzlers, Sweet Strings ‘n Sour Rings, Starbursts, Gummibursts, etc. Some refer to this segment of the market as gummies and jellies.

Today’s market size is the estimated total sales of chewy candies in the United States in 2010.
Happy Halloween!

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2010
Market size: $2.2 billion
Source: Grace Weitz, “Companies Juiced with New Gummy Products,” Candy Industry, April 28, 2011, available online here
Original source: Mintel
Posted on October 31, 2011

Functional Foods Market

At the most elemental level, we eat to supply our bodies with the nutrients necessary to maintain life. So by definition, food has a rather important function. However, the term functional food refers to processed foods and drinks that are marketed as having “health-promoting or wellness-maintaining properties”. The labels on such foods often include messages such as heart healthy, helps reduce cholesterol, clinically shown to improve kids attentiveness, helps support your immune system or your digestive system or your nervous system, etc.

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2009
Market size: $37.3 billion
Source: Singer, Natasha, “Food With Benefits, or So They Say,” The New York Times, May 15, 2011, page B1, available online here.
Original source: Nutritional Business Journal


The size of the market presented here is based on values at the wholesale level, farm receipts for sales of peanuts.

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2009
Market size: $800 million
Source: “U.S. Farm Sector Cash Receipts from Sales of Agricultural Commodities, 2006-2010F,” a table on the USDA’s Economic Research Service website, available online here.
Original source: Economic Research Service, United States Department of Agriculture

Halloween Market

The size of the market for all Halloween holiday spending is rather hard to measure as it incorporates many things: candy, snacks, costumes, pumpkins, scary decorations, etc. The results of a much-quoted survey undertaken by the National Retail Federation are what we present here. They represent an increase of 17% over estimated spending on Halloween in 2009. Shall we take this as a good sign, a sign of people feeling freer to spend money on nonessentials?

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2010
Market size: $5.8 billion
Source: “Halloween Spending Expected to Rise this Year,” Kansas City Star, October 11, 2010, available online here.
Original source: National Retail Federation

Global Market for Premium Chocolate

In terms of market share, Europe accounts for just over half of the world premium chocolate market. In terms of per capita consumption of all chocolate, by country, the leaders are: Switzerland with 22.4 pounds, Austria with 20.13 pounds and Ireland with 19.47 pounds. The United States comes in 8th on the list with an average of 11.7 pounds counsumed annually by each American. Please note, however, that these per capita consumption rates are for all chocolate not just premium chocolate. The market size presented below is the size of the premium chocolate market.

Geographic reference: World
Year: 2007
Market size: $6.9 billion
Source: “AROQ’s Global Market Review Series,” November 2008, page 3
Original source: just-food

Premium Chocolate Market

Europeans eat a lot of chocolate. In fact, the three nations with the highest per capita consumption of chocolate in the world are in Europe: Switzerland, Austria and Ireland. Premium chocolates represent about 12% of the overall chocolate market in Europe.

Geographic reference: Europe
Year: 2007
Market size: $3.8 billion
Source: “AROQ’s Global Market Review Series,” November 2008, page 3
Original source: just-food

Size of the Cracker Market

The three leading companies in the cracker business are Kraft, Kellogg and Pepperidge Farms and together they represent 75% of the market.

Geographic reference: United States
Year: 2008
Market size: $3.2 billion
Source: “U.S. Cracker Industry Update,” 2010 available online here.
Original source: Information Resources Inc., InfoScan and Mintel