Fresh Food

Reaching a Younger Demographic in the Meat Aisle

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While plant-based meals are finding their way into many consumers’ recipe repertoires — especially among younger demographics including millennials and Gen Z — meat still has a firm footing in these generations’ diets. In fact, younger generations increased their consumption of meat, including red meats, over the last year.

Beef and pork are as appealing as ever to younger shoppers, especially when they can find brands and products that align with their tastes, health goals and values. To continue to drive demand among these consumers — and compete against other retailers — focusing on meeting these needs is a strategy for success.

Younger meat eaters are increasing consumption compared to last year:

Meat, Poultry and Seafood Keynote (Datassential, 2022)

Millennial eating

Social connection to products

Millennials and Gen Z are largely conscious consumers who put their values front and center as they shop. As a result, they want products that are better for their health, for animals, for the planet and for their communities.

In the meat aisle, animal welfare and sustainability are front and center for these shoppers. Transparent sourcing and merchandising practices that communicate alignment with these values can help draw in younger consumers who are looking for products they feel great about buying — and retailers they can return to for meats that suit their lifestyles.

Open Prairie®Natural* Meats from Tyson Foods, for example, features the GAP (Global Animal Partnership) logo on packaging to certify third-party reviewing and auditing for animal welfare practices, supporting transparency and trust. A QR code on the package leads consumers to the Open Prairie site, where they can learn more about the brand’s commitment to animal welfare. This makes values-driven merchandising easier for retailers — and shopping easier for their customers.

Cow in field

Concerns for animal welfare and the environment influence how consumers shop for both beef and pork:

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Technomic’s 2021 Center of the Plate: Beef & Pork report

Tyson fresh meat

Personalization and experience

Whether at a restaurant or in the kitchen at home, younger generations are more likely to seek out innovative recipes. This can mean trying global flavors, for example, or incorporating trending ingredients for a fresh flair.

When it comes to bringing novelty meat-centered meals, it’s all in the prep; highlighting convenient products for cooking and offering recipe inspiration can help grocers add excitement to the meat aisle.

​​​​​​​Generational Consumer Trend Report (Technomic, 2020)

Healthy Eating Tyson

Health priorities

Current health trends, including increasing protein intake, decreasing carb intake and a focus on “natural” health claims, are on the radar for many younger consumers, and the meat aisle is equipped to accommodate many of them. For retailers, some of the same practices that help accommodate shoppers’ values and favorite food trends can help them deliver on this front; try offering vegetarian-fed meats for high-protein meals.

Percentage likely to purchase more and likely to pay…

​​​​​​​Healthy Eating Consumer Trend Report (Technomic, 2020)

Millennials and Gen Z bring sophisticated priorities to the table, but industry-leading meat supplier Tyson Foods offers a solution. The Open Prairie Natural Meats brand offers the qualities younger generations most prioritize in the meat aisle thanks to no antibiotics ever; no added hormones or growth promotants; 100% vegetarian diets for livestock; no animal byproducts, except for milk; and traceable, transparent sourcing via the Trusted Path™ Program.

To learn more about driving meat sales among younger shoppers, contact the Tyson Foods Team here:

Tyson Fresh Meats logo

​​​​​​​*Minimally processed. No artificial ingredients.

This post is sponsored by Tyson Foods, Inc.