KANSAS CITY — With spring well on its way and the Easter holiday rapidly approaching, retailers are stocking their shelves with seasonal limited-time offerings (LTOs).
In an annual survey conducted by Washington-based National Retail Federation, consumers are expected to spend a record-breaking $24 billion on Easter this year. The number is up from the $20.8 billion spent in 2022 and the previous record of $21.7 billion in 2020, according to the NRF. Consumers are expected to spend $3.3 billion on candy, $3.8 billion on gifts and $7.3 billion on food.
“As consumers plan to mark the occasion through a variety of traditions, retailers are dedicated to making this year a memorable holiday,” said Matthew Shay, president and chief executive officer of the NRF.
Companies are seizing the opportunity to capitalize on the record spending with new offerings. Mars, Inc. debuted its Easter line, which includes a new variety of M&M’s. M&M’s added a white chocolate marshmallow crispy treat flavor that features a rice crisp center, covered in white chocolate and pastel-colored candy shells.
“At Mars, we know core seasonal moments, like Easter, are an important occasion as people come together to celebrate with friends and family,” said Tim LeBel, president of sales at Mars Wrigley. “Mars is focused on delighting shoppers with products that have become holiday traditions, while also introducing them to new seasonal flavor combinations, delivering moments of happiness with our products at the center of consumer celebrations.”
Other major candy companies are reflecting trending flavors in their LTOs. Ferrara added globally inspired jellybeans to its Brach’s brand, which are available in chocolate macaron, strawberry mochi, churro, apple pie and lemon sorbet flavors.
“We’re constantly reviewing emerging flavors and cultural trends,” said Lauren Holtz Pezza, director of Brach’s and seasonal marketing at Ferrara Candy Co. “More than ever, consumers are focused on making memories together over adventurous flavors and experiences and we’re excited for our new Desserts of the World Jelly Beans to help satisfy those international cravings in a stress-free way this season.”