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Taking A Trip Down the (Grocery) Aisle

Posted on  17 April 15  by 

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by Emily Weiss

Do you ever find yourself traipsing through your local grocery store, admiring the colorful produce, scanning the cleverly composed endcaps, inspecting single-serve packages of quark and generally just waiting for inspiration to come? You’re not alone. Consumers, particularly members of the Millennial generation, are making major changes to the plotted-out process of grocery shopping. Boomers and older Xers tend to keep a running grocery list throughout the week, planning out the meals they’d like to make, picking a day to do “a big shop,” and cutting coupons before heading to the store. But younger consumers are showing a greater tendency to do things on the fly. In fact, according to our 2014 Values & Lifestyle Survey, about 32% of Millennial shoppers now say they prefer to do their meal planning in-store as they shop.

fim_FoodiesontheFly_401819_2Aside from the fact that food can now be bought in a number of different locations — farmers’ markets, specialty and convenience stores, even online — and consumers are more willing to make several stops to pick up their favorite goods, mobile tech plays a huge role in this shift toward the impromptu. Recipe archive apps like Epicurious are partnering with grocery stores and other networks to give shoppers suggestions on what to make based on what’s already in their cart. Coupon apps allow shoppers to scan products right in the aisle to see if they can get a discount on their way to checkout. Pinterest provides mealtime inspiration based around parties, events, seasons and special diets, with pins that provide a shopping list as well as a recipe.

Of course, lifestage is also a factor in this approach to shopping. Time-crunched parents of all ages still have a greater need to plan ahead, but for a huge number of cooking-enthusiast Millennials without family obligations, more experimentation in the kitchen equals more improvisation in grocery-store aisles.

 

photo credit: Charlotte90T, Flickr.com

 

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