Study: teens buying more organic - The Packer

Study: teens buying more organic

12/26/2013 11:21:00 AM
Tom Karst

A wide-ranging study of teen consumption trends states that more teens are choosing organic food compared with two years ago.

Minneapolis-based Piper Jaffray & Co. recently released its 26th semi-annual “Taking Stock With Teens” consumer research project . The study found that 39% of teens reported they ate organic food compared with 33% two years ago.

“This trend is likely to support ongoing demand for natural and organic grocery, as teens age into young adults and establish independent households,” according to the report.

According to Piper Jaffray research, 35% of teens said they were eating more organic food than a year ago. The survey did not break down purchases by type of food.

The survey may support conclusions of earlier research that point to greater interest in natural and organic food by younger consumers compared to the Baby Boomer generation.

In 2012, a study by global investment bank Jefferies and AlixPartners, a business advisory firm, said 58% of Millennials surveyed said they were willing to pay more for natural/organic products. That compares with only 43% of Baby Boomers who said they were willing to pay more for natural organic products, according to the study.

The shifting demographics of the U.S. population demand retailers’ attention, researchers say.

The study by Jefferies/AlixPartners, called “Trouble in Aisle 5,” said that Millennials over the age of 25 will make up roughly 19% of the U.S. population by 2020, up from just over 5% in 2010. Food-at-home spending by Millennials will jump by $50 billion annually through 2020, according to the study.

In contrast, at-home food spending by Baby Boomers could fall by as much as $15 billion per year through 2020, as more boomers enter retirement and will be more reliant on fixed incomes.

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Dave Hamel    
Santa Maria  |  December, 28, 2013 at 07:46 AM

Similar results have been reported as far back as March 1973 by S. H. Logan and D. B. De Loach in Bulletin 860 - THE FOOD STAMP PROGRAM: Del Norte and Humboldt Counties California. One finding in the research was that younger and more educated grocery shoppers purchased higher quality food products (vegetables and meats). The same conclusion was reached for both cash buyers and for food stamp buyers.

R Henry    
LA  |  December, 30, 2013 at 10:09 AM

How nice that young people can afford to pay triple for their produce. It escapes me that anybody buys costly organic produce. I just don't get it. * No demonstrated health benefit * No demonstrated eating quality improvement * Dubious claims about "Saving the Planet"

December, 30, 2013 at 02:07 PM

R Henry keep your head in the sand

Washington  |  December, 30, 2013 at 02:20 PM

Those numbers will change as teens become adults and parents and they are not spending their parents money and/or have to spread their hard earned paychecks on adult items. However organics are here to stay and will continue to grow in sales, just don't think that fresh produce organic volume in general will eclipse conventional.

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