We wanted to understand the role food origin plays in Millennials’ attitudes about food quality and how origin impacts their food purchasing behaviors. Furthermore, we wanted to uncover how they feel their attitudes and behaviors differ from their parents.
National US sample
14 states/22 cities
Ages 18 – 32 All involved in food purchasing decisions
Even male/female ratio
Mix of ethnicities and socio-economic backgrounds
Millennials are actually channel-agnostic when it comes to shopping, and retailers need to maximize each platform to build a lasting relationship with this generation. This report highlights eight things you can do to make your consumer experience resonate with Millennials.
The Parent’s food purchasing properties were defined in a way:
Millennials’ Food Purchasing Priorities were defined this way:
Origin not only impacts the freshness/ quality of the food, but also the “health” of it.
I try to buy from roadside fruit stands and vegetables stands or organic markets. My parents don’t share the same values. They buy whatever is the most convenient when they want it and I personally don’t feel that’s the best way to go about it.
~ Jessica, 29, FL
I’m definitely different from my parents. My parents go by cost. That’s their primary concern. They just go by what is cheapest. My veggies come from farmer’s markets and my meats come from Sprouts, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. I always do the research to check where they are from and to make sure they are healthy for my body.
~ Amanda, 28, CA
The way I eat is very different (from my parents.) I grew up in rural Indiana and ate a lot of Baby Boomer factory food. A lot of processed food. A lot of the food that we bought at the grocery store then was this type of factory processed food.
~ Shawna, 29, IL
I like buying food that is as local as possible. If I have the option, I would rather buy fruit from Florida than, say, Mexico or somewhere else. I feel like the closer you are to your home, the fresher it’s going to be, the less preservatives needed to keep the food fresh and ready to eat.
~ Mari, 24, TN
I don’t like buying stuff that is from too far away or from somewhere that doesn’t specialize in what they’re making.
~ Krista, 28, MA
I’m not necessarily a health guru, I eat junk food mainly, but origins do impact behavior. Mainly food that comes from overseas has been linked with disease.
~ Douglas, 20, NC
I do try to support the local economy. My mom will buy local too if she can afford it, but if it’s cheaper somewhere else, she’ll do that to get the best bang for the buck.
~ Trey, 26, TX
I try to always support the local community to help them rise up. My parents try to too, but they will honestly eat anything!
~ Kayla, 25, OR
If I see something is local, I find that to be a good thing, but I would not pay more money for that to be the case.
~ Evan, 25, NY
I generally wouldn’t buy something that’s overpriced at a farmer’s market, either. But, if it costs not too much more then I wouldn’t mind spending a little extra money on it.
~ Simon, 25, CA
“Buying local” also allows Millennials to feel like they are helping the environment.
The origins of food have a very large impact on my purchasing decisions. I am very focused on trying to keep a small ecological footprint.
~ Daniel, 23, MT
I like to go to local producers, farmers markets for my fruit and I wouldn’t mind getting organic meats as well, like chicken and beef, generally. That’s mostly, because I feel like it will help the environment a little bit. There’s a lot of damaging aspects to the big corporate game when you consider what’s happening to our environment, like mass production of methane and too much corn being produced.
~ Simon, 25, CA
Their “local purchases” enable them to feel they are having a strong positive impact on their health, their local economy and the environment.
I believe that purchasing items that are more local like from Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s are a bit healthier because I know where it (the food) traces back to and I also know that they aren’t going to be any kind of by products or chemicals that I wouldn’t want to have as my daily intake.
~ Ashley, 25, GA
I like to support the local farmers in the area…I feel like the farmers have a higher standard than the stores do because the grocery stores sometimes put out food that is not acceptable.
~ Heather, 28, NY
I think it’s important that we know where our food comes from and so much of the food that we buy in the grocery stores, we have no idea where it was manufactured, processed or anything
~ Zachary, 24, CA
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