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Taste

Hershey's To Develop A Line Of Meat Bars, But They Don't Want You To Call Them That

Mmmmmm, meat.

If "Hershey's meat bars" are words that sound delicious to you, you are in for a summertime treat.

Come August, Hershey’s will produce them under the Krave brand that it acquired last year.

Why this shift into protein, versus the chocolate that's been Hershey's bread and butter for more than a century?

You, and most of the people you know, are probably eating more fruit-and-nut or gluten-free snacks rather than candy bars these days, and Hershey's has felt the slump. The Wall Street Journal reports that shares in the 122-year-old company were down 2 percent on Tuesday, its sales down 5.6 percent and profit down 6 percent.

Meanwhile, meat snacks (an industry that includes cured meats and jerky) grew from $1.58 billion to nearly $2.5 billion between 2009 and 2014, according to data from IRIWorldwide, an analytics and consulting firm.

To keep up with these changing consumer tastes (or to attract new consumers) Hershey's will add meat bars to its Krave lineup -- a mix of dried meats, fruits and grains (think quinoa) -- to compete with the competitors closing in on the snack shelf such as Epic's bison bars (which were recently acquired by General Mills) or Caveman Foods' chicken bars.

While Hershey's is keeping most of the details of these meat bars guarded, there is something they would like you to get straight: Don't call them meat bars.

"We aren’t going out there saying it is a meat bar. We’re saying it is a Krave bar,” Rusti Porter, vice president of marketing for Hershey’s Krave, told WSJ. “It’s not just beef jerky in a bar in your mouth.”