Consumption of fruits and vegetables in millennials

Consumption of fruits and vegetables in millennials
10 November

According to data from AECOC ShopperView, young adults are the population sector that consume the least amount of fruit and vegetables.

Table:  fruit and vegetable  consumption 6/7 days of the week by sex and age range.

To understand more precisely the reasons behind this low consumption rate, a study has been conducted, in collaboration with UNIQ, focused on this sector of the population which has great potential and future for the sector: millennials. For the study, people aged 18 to 35 years who buy fruits and/or vegetables or who are consumers of these foods at least once a week have been surveyed at least once a month.

What kind of consumers are millennials?

According to this study, there are several points that define, as consumers, this sector of the population:

  • They have great access to information, which makes them more sure of themselves when making purchases.
  • As buyers, defend their choices
  • They look for real benefits in products
  • They discuss and think about what they are proposing
  • They value sincere and direct speech
  • They have experienced the crisis with their parents and have learned from it: they do not want to live beyond their means
  • They save in the face of possible economic instability
  • In spite of everything, they are clear about what they want and they are not willing to give it up.

Millennials and the consumption of fresh products

Regarding the consumption of fresh foods, young people find several handicaps that influence their purchasing choices:

  • Food waste: they cannot find the balance between the amount purchased and the amount consumed.
  • For this reason, they often avoid buying this type of food.
  • Most of these products require time, effort and knowledge about their preparation, something that millennials are not willing to invest in.

For these reasons, what this sector is looking for in fresh foods is that they are easy to manipulate and practical at the time of consumption, such as:

  1. Salads in bags
  2. Fruits such as apples and bananas, which allow greater  quantity and consumption control
  3. Tomatoes and onions

Therefore, the most attractive option for this public is to offer fresh products such as fruits and vegetables cut, clean and ready for consumption in small or individual portions.

Conclusions of the study

According to the analyzed data, 87% of millennials buy fresh fruit/vegetables at least once a month. 86% consume fruit and/or vegetables in their home at least once a week and only 37% do so every day.

What fruits and vegetables do millennials buy?

As for fruit, the classics and in this order:


Regarding vegetables, the basics and salads also win:


Grocery shopping is both done in supermarkets/hypermarkets and in specific shops (neighborhood greengrocers and markets). Most prefer to serve themselves to choose the pieces they want to take.

And what is the most important factor for them when buying fruits and vegetables?

In this order:

1.- Appearance
2.- The price per kilo
3.- That they are in season
4.- Origin
5.- Health benefits

In addition, packaging is key, provided it is sustainable and contains quality product.

Keys to activate consumption

After analyzing all the data, the study concludes that there are several factors that should be further developed to activate the consumption of fruits and vegetables in this segment of the population:

  1. Communication. This public demands information about the health benefits that these types of products have. What they would like to find available are: healthy products, superfoods and products with added benefits.
  2. Individual formats or smaller containers to avoid wasting food.
  3. Sustainable packaging. Packaging with less impact on the environment, meaning, more cardboard and less plastic.
  4. More ECO or BIO products, but without making the products more expensive.
  5. Recipes. Offer brochures with tips, recipes, etc. at the point of sale.


Images: AECOC