Cross-generational influencers including Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X and Boomers are shaping the future of food and nutrition, according to a U.S. report by FleishmanHillard.
“Gen Food” as they are being called, take great interest in the food they consume and how it impacts their health.
“We call these cross-generational influencers ‘Gen Food’ because food defines them and is an important part of their values and belief system,” said Jamie Greenheck, global managing director of FleishmanHillard’s Food, Agriculture and Beverage practice.
“They’re taking personal responsibility for improving the way we eat and drink, which provides a tremendous opportunity for brands looking to connect and drive action through food.”
The online survey evaluated drivers related to food, influences and behaviors among 2,001 nutrition-forward consumers. Respondents were questioned on seeking information about food, sharing content about food and paying attention to ingredient lists.
The research shows that food unites these generations of people more than it divides them, with over 90 per cent saying food is an important part of their “values and belief system”.
Almost 80 per cent feel that it is their responsibility to share food information with others with more believing that they can make a difference in the kinds of foods they eat and how they are grown.
Reducing food waste is a top priority of this group of people and they are at the forefront of tackling such food issues that are important to them. Most also believe that the responsibility lies with them in terms of improving what and how we eat rather than with food companies, government entities or health professionals.
“The implications for food, agriculture and beverage companies are profound. Speaking Gen Food’s language and understanding their values is important to having relevant conversations about everything from sustainable nutrition to agricultural practices and food waste. It’s also vital to focus on the benefits of innovation as they become the primary drivers of food choice. Additionally, companies should make it easy for consumers to participate and contribute to a better, more responsible food system,” Greenheck said.