The future of food is set to be driven by an emergence of shared cross-generational beliefs and behaviours, according to a new report from FleishmanHillard.
The Shaping the Future of Food report, released this month at The Culinary Institute of America’s rethink Food conference, calls this phenomenon ‘Generation Food’.
“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 MD 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 study of engaged consumers shows food unites more than it divides Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X and Boomers. 91% of those say food is an important part of their values and belief system.
35% say that food defines them, while 79% feel it’s their role and responsibility to share food information with others.
81% believe they can make a difference in the kinds of foods we eat and how they are grown, with 60% saying they bear the responsibility for improving what and how we eat – more than food companies, government entities or health professionals.
“The implications for food, agriculture and beverage companies are profound,” said Greenheck.
“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.”