Which Cities Spend the Most on Snack Foods?

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Online retailer Alice.com crunched the numbers to figure out which cities in America spent the most on snack foods throughout 2011. While the national average was $3.79 per order on its site, residents of some cities are more likely to chow down than others. One city spent more than five times the national average on goodies like chips and cheese puffs.

Alice.com users in Greenville, N.C. spent a hefty $20.26 on snack foods per order. This was nearly twice as much as the $10.86 spent by residents of San Antonio, which comes in as runner-up in the site’s snacking top five list. Put another way: That’s a lot of tortilla chips.

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Rounding out the top five on Alice.com’s list are Springfield, Ma., Salinas, Ca. and greater Shreveport, La.

The site’s five best-selling snacks include two kinds of tortilla chips (plain and nacho), potato chips and cheese puffs, along with almonds. (At least some snackers are trying to add a little protein to the mix.)

But Americans aren’t homogenous when it comes to their preferred noshes. Although potato chips seem to be a universal favorite, different regions have decidedly different preferences: New Yorkers prefer popcorn, while Philly residents opt for cinnamon-sugar pita chips. The top snack in Phoenix is crackers, while nacho tortilla chips are No. 1 in Raleigh-Durham, N.C. And not every place in the country views snacking as an all-you-can-eat pastime. Residents of the Beaumont-Port Arthur region of Texas came in at the bottom of Alice.com’s survey, only spending an average of $2.41 on snacks per order.

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With the Super Bowl a week and a half away, there’s little doubt Americans all over the country will be getting their snack on. According to Nielsen Companies, last year we spent nearly $700 million on 177 million pounds of gametime snacks during the two weeks around the Big Game, an increase of $55 million from the year before. And we washed those snacks down with more than 49 million cases of beer.

If the trend continues, someone is liable to get seriously hurt: Alice.com says antacid sales tend to spike by 20 percent on the day after the Superbowl.