ROCKVILLE, MD. — The shift toward healthy snacking is having a positive effect on the cracker market in the United States, according to the market research firm Packaged Facts. As snacking becomes a more pronounced meal occasion, the trend bodes well for the future performance of the cracker category.

Healthy “snackers” form the core of a consumer segment that is driven by health and wellness concerns and drawn to snacks derived from ingredients perceived as healthy such as vegetables, legumes, high-protein foods and ancient grains. As marketers of crackers launch more healthy-ingredient crackers to meet the needs of healthy snackers, the market will grow accordingly, said David Sprinkle, research director for Packaged Facts.

The research company estimated cracker category sales to be in excess of $7 billion in 2013, according to its report “Crackers: U.S. market trends.”

Mr. Sprinkle also noted that while there is a significant amount of innovation occurring in the cracker category, such mainstay products as saltines and graham crackers remain popular, with more than 40% of households consuming saltines and 23% consuming graham crackers.