Person holding grocery basket filled with food

At this very moment, something big is happening in the food industry, and it’s dramatically changing where companies need to focus their growth potential.

Today’s consumers want more variety and healthier options, creating new demand for new products. Large businesses often fail to capture this new demand because they don’t offer the right products to the right people, and are losing market share to long-tail specialty brands. By carefully tracking and responding to shifting consumer preferences, companies can meet this demand. But while it’s clear that new consumer desires have the potential to spur growth for the food industry, who are the consumers that matter most?

2006-2016 Food and Beverage Changes in Consumer Expenditures chart

You guessed it – multiculturals!

For the big food industry brands, the multicultural market cannot be overlooked: their expenditures have grown by over $34 Billion over the last decade. Meanwhile, non-Hispanic White expenditures have in fact declined by almost $32 Billion over the same period of time. That means over 100% of growth came from the multicultural market.

As the multicultural population continues to grow, corporations large and small will have to adapt to rapidly-evolving consumer profiles. While new entrants are agile, swiftly entering niche spaces to capitalize on trends, our research shows there is still ample room for big brands to win big in multicultural food & beverage  spending.

So, what should industry giants do?

If you want to capture your fair share of this emerging and powerful market, it’s time to start thinking like smaller, new entrants. This means understanding and delivering on multicultural being at the center of your resource allocation. After all, the multicultural population has kept the food industry afloat despite years of declining spending, and they’re continuing to grow. We will have a lot to share in our upcoming webinar on the topic, but to get you started, here are three actionable insights you can leverage:

  • If you’re moving into “ethnic” food offerings, marketing should focus not on authenticity, but instead on health, freshness, natural ingredients
  • Convenience is not the primary motivation for ordering takeout/delivery, rather, it’s the “treat yourself” mentality
  • In the trade-off between health, authenticity, and convenience, every ethnic segment favors health, but Asians and Hispanic are more likely to do so

Author: Katie Hockstein