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When Told to Eat Your Vegetables, the Kids Apparently Listened
Posted on November 16, 2016 by Chris Campbell

Eat your vegetables. Who didn't hear this phrase as a kid? I know I certainly did, and the chorus has been immortalized in television shows and advertising campaigns for years. And you know what? It just may have worked.

According to the NPD Group, Millennials and members of Generation Z are driving the growth in the fresh and frozen vegetables market. According to the group, consumers under the age of 40 are increasing their eatings per capita of fresh vegetables by 52% over the past decade. During the same time period, frozen vegetable consumption by the cohort grew by 59%.

The NPD Group expects that this generational change is fuled by an overall shift by younger consumers to eat fresh foods over the past 10 years. These eaters are adopting fresh foods at a much earlier age than the generations that came before them. According to David Portalatin, vice president, food industry analyst at NPD Group:

"Vegetable consumption among younger consumers is a reflection of their more health-conscious eating behaviors...Our research shows that their attitudes about eating vegetables will not shift as they age and go through their life stages."

To that point, the group expects that Millennials and members of Generation Z will sustain the growth exhibited in the fresh vegetable market for years to come as they enter their prime consumption years. According to the NPD Group's A Generational Study: The Evolution of Eating, this group will likely drive a 10% increase in fresh vegetable consumption and a 3% rise in frozen vegetable consumption for the next ten years.

A suprising fact also emerges from the NPD research. Boomers, ages 60 and up, actually decreased their consumption of fresh and frozen vegetable products over the timeframe by 30% and 40%, respectively. Perhaps another addage is fitting for the generation.

Do as I say and not as I do.

Posted in Vegetables   Consumer Insights  


About the Author

Chris Campbell
Business Writer
The Food Institute

Chris focuses on fresh, canned and frozen fruit and fresh and dried vegetables for the Food Institute Report. In addition, he assists in compiling data for various Food Institute publications throughout the year. He is a proud Rutgers University alumnus with a degree in English, and has a background in web writing for a variety of industries, including legal, foodservice and small-to-medium sized businesses. In his downtime you can find him watching New York Yankees baseball, hiking, enjoying live music and spending time with his dog Kaiden. He invites you to contact him via email at to talk about anything food-related.


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