Millennial Foodie Trends 2015: From Dining and Beer, to Ingredients and GMOs [FREE Foodable Labs Report]

“Millennial” has become a buzzword that makes most in the 18-34 age bracket want to hide under a rock (or more appropriately, behind their smartphone). Why? Because most media tend to generalize this largely populated generation, enhancing the need for deeper data on specific habits. That was the intention for Foodable Labs’ Millennial Trends report, mapping Millennial preferences, habits and trends through a myriad of deep-dive data, both outside and proprietary, in order to paint a more realistic picture of this group. 

Millennial expert and author Dan Schawbel tells Inc., “Millennials love a cause-driven company. Share your mission and offerings and ask for feedback: what could you do better? Millennials want to have a say and are generous with feedback.” Engaging this group through interactive elements and highly visual assets, like video, is also important, says Schawbel. “If you own a restaurant, for instance, shoot a video of your chef cooking a dish and ask what dish they want your chef to create for them in the next video. If Millennials influence what you do, they will become more aligned with your product.”

Not only do a plethora of social media and mobile trends affect brands of all kinds, they also affect restaurants, chefs, and the foodservice industry as a whole. Think about it: Millennials are shifting societal norms and are reshaping the economy through their ethics and beliefs, and “supporting local” is a huge part of this. A study done by Edelman Digital reports that 40 percent of Millennials say they prefer to buy local. But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

In the Millennial Trends Report, Foodable Labs takes a look at nine major trends, habits and preferences of this generation, including — but not limited to — beverage trends, females in the workplace, and dining and ingredient trends, as it relates to this generation and, for the most part, the dining industry.

Below is a sample of what you can expect to see in the full report, which you can download here.

Top Millennial Craft Beer Trends

According to Mintel, the buying audience of craft alcohol is largely Millennials, who seek for the authenticity, flavor, and history behind the bottle. More than 40 percent of these consumers said craft beer tastes better, and a study from Technomic shows that 50 percent of millennials ordered their favorite craft beer, versus the 22 percent that tried new ones. These suggest a strong indication of brand loyalty. 

Quick Facts

  • The Brewers Association has stated a goal for the craft segment to make 20 percent of the volume by 2020.
  • There are more than 3,000 craft brewers in the United States — and 196 million barrels of U.S. beer produced annually. (Brewers Association)
  • In one year, craft brewers produced 18 percent more beer than the year before. Sales of craft beer rose 22 percent to $19.6 billion. (IBTimes)
  • Less than 25 percent of craft breweries are owned or controlled by an industry member who is not a craft brewer. (CNBC)
  • 73 percent of craft beer consumers know what brand they would choose before going to the store. (Craft Brewing Business)
  • Craft beers appeal to 49 percent of Millennials, 40 percent of Gen Xers, 29 percent of Baby Boomers, and 22 percent of the Swing Generation. (Craft Brewing Business)
  • Hispanic consumers turn to craft beer — 38 percent indicated they would consume it at any time. (Craft Brewing Business)
  • Mintel stated in 2013 that craft beer sales are to triple within a 10-year period.

Foodable Labs Research*

  • 28.4M millennials consume 3.3 craft beers per month
  • 19.4M millennials pair craft beer with menus 1.3X per month
  • The Top 250 Craft Beer Brewers connect with over 12M millennials each month

*Data sourced from the Restaurant Social Media Index Jan 1, 2015 thru June 15, 2015

In the full Millennial Trends Report, you’ll learn:

  • Top Millennial food trends surrounding health & wellness
  • Top Millennial craft beer trends
  • Top Millennial dining trends, including day-part percentages
  • Top 10 ingredients Millennials are talking about most
  • Millennial fast-casual trends, including most popular categories and proteins
  • Organic vs. GMO trends
  • and more!