As a desire for farm-to-table narratives increases, the culture of the food industry continues to evolve in order to meet changing consumer demands and interests. In particular, the industry is seeing a large scale push for organic products, as Millennials enter into the shopping the arena with purchasing practices predicated on nutrition and healthy living.
Significantly, it’s not just Millennials on the whole that are showing an increased interest in organic shopping but, more specifically, Millennial parents.
According to the Organic Trade Association (OTA) U.S. Families’ Organic Attitudes and Beliefs 2016 Tracking Study, 52 percent of parents who purchase organic goods fall within the 18-34 age range; whereas, of the 1,800 households pooled, 35 percent of those parents shopping organic were of Generation X. Behind Gen X were the Baby Boomers, representing 14 percent of such shoppers.
Noting the benefits of organic living both on the body and on the environment, the survey suggests that Millennial parents are looking to these healthier options in order to support not just their own nutrition, but their families as well. Rather than targeting the eating habits of their children later down the line, many Millennials are teaching their children earlier on about nutritional shopping and nutritional eating habits.
Being organic is a lifestyle, and it all starts with knowing where your products are grown, how they are produced, and learning where and how to shop organic. Creating this lifestyle and teaching children how to become organic buyers and healthy consumers is therefore becoming an increasingly high priority for many Millennial parents.
While the organic lifestyle appears to be catching on most heavily with Millennials, promisingly, the study also found that 82 percent of U.S. families say they do purchase organic goods occasionally. While alone these numbers are encouraging, OTA further found that the percentage of families who say they purchase no organic goods has steadily declined from 30 percent to 18 percent since 2009.
The OTA survey results show us that market expectations are changing, and if vendors and grocery stores alike do not respond accordingly, consumers, particularly Millennial parents, will bring their business elsewhere to ensure that they—and their families—are getting quality fresh, organic products, even if that means driving a few extra miles to the chain that will deliver.