Hispanic Millennials and Healthy Eating.

Sep 5, 2012

Adult Hispanic Millennials love traditional Latin foods and are more likely than non-Hispanics to cook with fresh ingredients. They are also more likely to enjoy cooking and to use fresh ingredients than their non-Hispanic peers, this according to a report by Insight Tr3s, based on an analysis of Simmons data on traditional foods and cooking habits among adult Hispanic Millennials (ages 18 to 29).

Among some of the findings:

Traditional Hispanic/Spanish and American Foods

  • More than 8 out of 10 adult Hispanic Millennials enjoy eating traditional Hispanic/Spanish food.
  • A slightly smaller majority – 7 out of 10 – enjoy eating traditional American food.
  • Close to half (48%) buy more Hispanic/Spanish foods and products than American.

Cooking and Food Preparation

Compared with non-Hispanic Millennials, Hispanic Millennials like cooking more and have more of a tendency to use fresh ingredients. Foreign-born and US-born Hispanics enjoy cooking, though US-born Hispanics are developing more of a taste for ready-to-eat foods.

  • Hispanics are slightly more likely than non-Hispanics to really enjoy cooking.
  • Compared with non-Hispanics, Hispanics are more likely to look for the freshest ingredients when they cook.
  • Hispanics are more likely than non-Hispanics to look for organic or natural foods when shopping.
  • Hispanics are far less likely than non-Hispanics to say simple, easy-to-prepare foods are their favorites (41% Hispanic, 52% non-Hispanic).
  • Overall, Hispanics are less likely than non-Hispanics to eat prepared foods. Hispanics are much less likely to eat store-made, pre-cooked meals (20% Hispanic, 29% non-Hispanic).
  • Hispanics are also less likely than non-Hispanics to say they don’t have time to prepare and eat healthy meals (26% Hispanic, 32% non-Hispanic).            
  • Overall, Hispanics 18-29 are more likely to report an interest in nutrition and dieting. Hispanics 25-29 are more likely than 18-24s to focus on nutrition and health, while the 18-24 segment has a slightly higher tendency to diet to lose weight. Foreign-born Hispanics are generally more likely than US-born to report making choices based on health and dieting -- but when it comes to purchase behavior they are as likely or more to buy full-fat dairy products, pre-sweetened cereals, and non-diet cola.
  • Hispanics 18-29 are more likely than non-Hispanics to say that nutritional value is the most important factor in what foods they eat.
  • Hispanics 25-29 are more likely than 18-24s to say they're trying to eat healthier foods these days.

Hispanics are far more likely than non-Hispanics to purchase full-fat yogurt and smoothies. For pre-sweetened cold cereals, Hispanics also lead non-Hispanics, though US-born are more likely to purchase these.

Source: Insight Tr3s, Hispanic Millennials: How They Feel About Traditional Foods and Cooking, based on  Experian Simmons, Winter 2012 NHCS Adult Survey 12-month, September 5, 2012.            

By Lisa M. Rawleigh
Author - Administrative Assistant III