Taste the change? – How Gen Z are reshaping the food industry
For most people, Gen Z are a tough egg to crack. They come into millennial and boomer populated spaces with their neon shoes and digital native aura that makes anyone above 30 feel like a dinosaur, holding a mirror to the world we live in.
And it’s safe to say they’re leaving their mark on every sector across the board, with the food industry being no exception.
So, whether your F&B brand has been around for decades or you’ve just started, here’s what you need to know about those born after 1996.
1. Your ground-breaking is often times their norm.
Millennials have paved the way for Gen Z – that much is true. As such, many of the disruptive changes instigated by their predecessors are now considered as the norm by Zoomers. We’re talking palates that are used to a wider range of flavors, sure, but also online grocery shopping / delivery and upholding values such as clean eating, clear labeling, and an overall attunement to their mental health that transpires in their lifestyle and the way they eat.
2. Your food is part of their personal brand.
While Millennials view brands as people, Gen Z seem to perceive people (and themselves) as brands with their own story to tell. Much like what they wear and where they shop or connect with friends, what Gen Z eat is part of their personal brand, making food a key component of how they choose to present and express themselves.
3. Your company size doesn’t matter to them.
Millennials were notoriously known for shedding light on niche local brands and their distrust of big brands. The tables seem to turn now that Gen Z have come out to play. To younger adults, big doesn’t necessarily mean bad, as long as you’re playing by their own rules. You don’t have to own a hidden gem tucked away in a backstreet to win this generation over, just be authentic and proud to serve the food that makes you want to lick that spoon clean!
4. You better keep their phones in mind
Gen Z are digital natives, which means they don’t know the world pre-Internet. It also means their phones are “eating” with them and that plate is most likely ending up on their social media for one of two reasons: it’s great or super bad. We hope for you it’s not the latter. Every step of a Zoomer customer’s journey has its importance online: from discovery to adoption, and bashing. So make sure your feed is on-point, your food instagrammable, and that you’re up to speed on those TikTok food trends!
As a new generation comes of age and walks into adulthood, the formal economy, and our businesses, it becomes more important than ever for new and established brands alike to stay relevant and cater to the needs of this new clientele. Like Millennials before them, Gen Z are shaking up the food industry, whether they choose to find the best noodles in town, go plant-based, or digitize their delivery experience. The times are changing, and we don’t know about you, but we’re thrilled to accompany the food industry through this exciting era.