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What makes a millennial?

As the largest generational class in the US today, the millennials are in the driver’s seat in terms of dictating products, services, trends and outcomes. It is worth noting that a consistent age range to define millennials is hard to find. But, generally, people born between 1981 and 2004 encompass the generation.

While one size does not fit all, there are some commonalities. Because millennials grew up with technological change, globalization and economic disruption, they have a new and unique set of experiences and behaviors. They are the most ethnically diverse generation. They are highly educated and tend to be confident, which some say spills over into entitled.

Because of their early connection to technology, millennials are the most online-driven, engaged consumer the marketplace has ever encountered. As noted by a report from Elite Daily, a web-based media company, nearly 90% of millennials use multiple communication devices daily. Roughly half use social media or other Internet-based venues to make buying decisions, and only 1% say they are influenced by advertising.

A study by CrowdTwist, a New York-based, customer-data, brand-loyalty consulting firm, revealed that millennials are extremely loyal (50.5%) to their favorite brands. But brand loyalty means something different with these consumers than with past generations.

“They like smaller brands, artisan brands. They want products or brands that fit their own values,” says Mary Shelman, president of Shelman Group and former Harvard Business School consumer researcher. “So, they look for companies or products with attributes or behaviors that align with their beliefs.”

She points out that 37% of millennials report they purchase a product because of a “cause,” even if they have to pay more for it. More sobering, 42% say they don’t trust big food companies or big-name brands.


Back to Consumer Trends



Posted on February 25, 2018

  • Shifting consumer trends require a more open dialogue

    Baby boomers have long dominated the retail marketplace — and they’ve been loyal meat customers. But that dynamic is shifting as millennial and younger shoppers, who are less committed to meat as their go-to protein, are starting to outnumber boomers.

  • The eve of disruption: How changes in retail and consumer trends might affect pork consumption—and production

    In this special report, Pig Health Today looks at disruptions in the consumer and retail landscapes and how they could forever change the US pork industry and the way pigs are raised.

  • Product claims = more sales

    Production claims on meat and poultry product labels are generating more sales volume and more dollars, according to a Nielsen survey.

  • Protein by any other name

    Meat and poultry have dominated the American diet over the years. But the movement toward protein alternatives, particularly plant-based products, is growing.

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It’s not unrealistic to say that if you checked the nasal cavities or tonsils of any group of pigs, you would find Strep suis. While the strain and impact can vary widely, this commensal bacterium is on virtually every hog farm.

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