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Home > Feature Articles > Restaurant and Institutional Best Practice Strategies for Food Management

Boomers Are Losing their Taste Buds...Buy Intense Flavored Foods

Baby Boomers have bold flavor preferences as they age and that affects the entire food market

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Food Processing and Marketing for Baby Boomers

"There's no question that as the baby boomers are aging they're losing their taste buds, and as a result they're drawn not only to more spicy foods, but to more flavorful foods of all kinds," said Phil Lempert, a food market analyst who runs SupermarketGuru.com, which tracks consumer trends in supermarkets and restaurants.

Food and Flavor Trends for Boomers

"So we're seeing sweet things be even more intense in their sweetness. And look at sales of salsa," he said. "First the big seller was mild, then medium, and now hot, and that really correlates with the population boom."

Boldly Flavoring Where Few Have Gone Before!

Older adults have the highest preferences for boldly flavored cheeses, such as blue, feta, and Gorgonzola, according to Sloan Trends Inc. in Escondido, Calif., which tracks behavioral and consumer habits in food and nutrition. Eighty percent of the 2 million annual visitors to Fiery-Foods.com, a website for aficionados of chili peppers and barbecue sauce, are men 45 and older, according to Dave DeWitt, who runs the site and also publishes Fiery Foods and BBQ magazine.

Increased spiciness is just one of many ways the wealthiest, most influential demographic group in US history is changing how we eat. Market research shows boomers have helped drive consumer demand for organic foods, grab-and-go foods, nutritionally enhanced products, and fresh local produce.

As boomers continue to age, they will almost certainly keep reshaping the American foodscape, ushering in the same kinds of changes they have brought to sectors of the economy as disparate as music and mutual funds. And as restaurants and food manufacturers come to terms with the surprising new preferences of older palates, their influence will affect what we see in stores and on menus for years to come.

SOURCE: Boston Globe



Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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