How Millennials Are Changing Food Industry Choices
Authors & Contributors
David M. Sealy
Changing US consumption patterns are forcing big change in the food industry. Millennials don't eat three square meals a day like their parents. Millennials graze, often eating just one meal a day, supplemented with three to four nutritious snacks. This new way of eating favors small local food companies whose brands emphasize quality ingredients and sell through non-traditional channels with higher ‘snack occasion' penetration.
Large companies are slowly responding. Some snacking leaders are launching new products, such as plant-based chips and nut snacks and repositioning ad campaigns to stress ingredient quality. Other companies have resorted to small bolt-on acquisitions to meet these consumer demands. However, most large-scale food companies acknowledge their inherent disadvantages on this new playing field and are focusing more on margin management to grow earnings. Some also view large-scale consolidation as a way to facilitate this margin strategy. Time will tell if these changes are durable and if larger snack manufacturers can adapt.
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