New research suggests that millennials are improving the way we shop and eat. The impact goes well beyond social media postings of avocado toast. Millennials are the largest generation since the baby boomers, and it’s no wonder they are reshaping the American diet.
A study conducted by Whole Foods and YouGov surveyed over 1000 adults ages 27-37 to find out what items in the supermarket are most important to them.
- Nearly 70% spent more on food than on travel in the past year. Seven out of 10 also are willing to pay more for high-quality items.
- Nearly half have tried a special diet, such as keto or Paleo, in the past year. And they’ll pay more for convenience foods that fit special dietary guidelines.
- More than 60% try to incorporate plant-based and unprocessed foods into their diets.
- Half buy more organic foods than they did five years ago. More than half pay a premium for products that have adopted animal welfare standards, and 65% want to know how their food is sourced, especially when it comes to meat and seafood. Nearly 70% are reading labels more closely than they used to.
- Half seek out products with less packaging and plastic.
- Most consider themselves “adventurous” eaters, eager to try new cuisines and cook new dishes.
What does this mean for the supermarket retailer? The most obvious impact is millennials and gen Z shoppers are spending more time in the store. This is great for business, but store owners and retail chains will have to make accommodations for these changing preferences. When it comes to popular diets, some stores have been lagging when it comes to offering low carb options or more plant-based products. For decades, these items have been thought of as products you will find in specialty and health food stores. However, if these trends continue, all stores will have to adapt to new demands or lose profits in an evolving market.