Hershey (HSY) is going Vegan!

March 10, 2023

Hershey is throwing its hat into the ring. The dairy-free ring.

On Tuesday, the popular candy maker officially announced 2 new dairy-free products: plant-based Reese’s cups and a plant-based version of the iconic Hershey’s bar.

The consumer reactions we’ve seen so far are overwhelmingly positive, especially for the vegan Reese’s cups:

Despite a positive reaction to this news, LikeFolio trend data suggests mentions of Vegan, Plant-Based, and Dairy-Free Diets have lost steam over the last three years.

This isn’t the first product that The Hershey Co. has released for consumers avoidant of animal products. In 2021, the company experimented in test markets with Oat Made, an oat milk chocolate bar.

However, the company hopes to cater to a new, healthier-focused crowd by creating a plant-based version of its most well-known chocolates.

The company explained its move into the specialized diet sector: "Our purpose is to create more moments of goodness for consumers. Those moments are now more accessible for chocolate lovers looking for plant-based alternatives."

We’ll be monitoring consumer diet trends to see if plant-based alternatives will gain any steam.

We do expect a bump in Hershey consumer happiness -- from users who fall into each specialized diet camp, and even from relatives happy to share in their new experience. But this new line is a few years behind the specialized diet heyday.

And the office will be putting in a special order of those plant-based Reese’s cups to see if they even come close to the real thing (doubt it).

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