With Australian tastes in confectionery moving quickly over recent years, chocolate manufacturers are being advised to keep a close eye on changes.
“It is vital for chocolate bar manufacturers to understand the detailed profiles of their customers and how they differ from those of other brands to ensure they remain competitive,” said Norman Morris of market research giant Roy Morgan.
According to new research by the company, over the 12 months to March 2013, 49% of Australians aged 14 and over consumed chocolate bars in an average four-week period - down from 53% in the year to March 2009.
First produced in 1924, not only is Cherry Ripe Australia’s oldest chocolate bar, it’s also the country’s favourite with 10% of Aussies indulging in a bar - up from 9% in the year to March 2009 - ahead of Cadbury Dairy Milk 50g blocks (9%, up from 8%).
“Over the last five years there has been a small decrease in the proportion of Australians consuming chocolate bars in any given four-week period. During this time, Cherry Ripe and Cadbury Dairy Milk 50g bars gained popularity while Mars and Kit Kat declined.
Mars Bars came in third, but the proportion of Aussies consuming the bar has decreased over the last five years to 8% (from 10% in the year to March 2009).
While Cherry Ripe is the most popular chocolate bar among the total population, sweet-tooths aged under 25 are more likely to consume Boost bars (14%), while those aged 25-34 favour Mars Bar (11%).
“It’s interesting to note how taste varies by age, with those aged over 35 showing a clear preference for Cherry Ripe, and those under 35 more likely to consume other chocolate bar brands,” added Morris.