The Millennial generation, aka Generation Y, is made up of those born between 1980-2000 (give or take a few years depending on who you ask), and as the biggest generation of consumers, their preferences will be driving food trends for a long time. They’re larger than the Baby Boom generation and account for $1.3 trillion in annual consumer spending in the US, an amount expected to rise even further.
As a result, there’s been a great deal of research examining Millennials’ values and motivations when it comes to food. There are a couple of identified trends that stand out to us, and we take a look at what they could mean for produce consumption in general and of course, for Arctic® apples as well!
Healthy Eating: One of the most prominent trends is a clear indication that Millennials are interested in foods that are fresh, simple and healthy. They are placing a higher emphasis on healthy offerings than ever before, even from fast food chains!
This is great news for the produce industry, as these desires will point Millennials straight to fresh fruits and veggies. Fresh, healthy and convenient also perfectly describe freshcut Arctic® apples, as they better retain their natural freshness and nutritional content in addition to avoiding the need for anti-browning treatments. Our own market research demonstrates that the majority of apple eaters prefer untreated apple slices, and per third party survey results, it’s clear the desire to avoid chemicals/treatments is especially pronounced for Millennials!
Desire for Convenience/Flexibility: The Hartman Group, a leading consumer research company, has found that Millennials eat more impulsively and eat away from home more often than older consumers. Millennials also tend to prefer the convenience of things like single-serve packaging or ready-to-eat meals/snacks, and the flexibility to make spontaneous purchase decisions.
These preferences make more “snackable” produce items particularly appealing, which is likely one of the main reasons freshcut fruits and veggies have been steadily gaining popularity for years. Considering Arctic® apples can save freshcut processors significant costs and offer a better tasting product for consumers (while also reducing waste throughout the supply chain), it is clear they offer what Millennials are after, whether in the grocery store or at their favourite dining establishment!