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Percentage of U.S. consumers interested in alternative diets 2018, by generation

In 2018, over 60 percent of millennials in the United States were interested in the flexitarian diet. A flexitarian diet implies eating mostly plant-based foods, but also meat and animal products in moderation. Millennials led 2018’s list for each of the alternative diets.

Millennial nourishment

About 50 percent of American millennials were curious about the vegetarian lifestyle in 2018. The number one reason why millennials decided to adopt a meat-free diet was for their overall health. There were, however, other factors that influenced the group in 2018, such as the impact on the environment and the treatment of animals. In terms of nutrition, the younger generation has been changing its eating behavior and food choices in recent years. In 2018, roughly half of millennials in the United States were willing to pay extra for food that offered benefits beyond basic nutrition. In contrast, only about a third of American boomers were inclined to pay a premium.

Plant-based foods market

In recent years, the number of plant-based foods, which serve as alternatives for meat and dairy products, has risen. In the United States, the sales value of plant-based spreads, dips, sour cream, and sauces has grown by just over 50 percent.

Share of U.S. consumers who were interested in flexitarian, vegetarian, or vegan diets in 2018, by generation

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Release date

May 2018


United States

Survey time period


Age group

18 years and older

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Statistics on "Generation X (Gen X) in the U.S.: Grocery shopping behavior"

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