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Millennial Moms Choose Nutrition Over Price, Convenience For Kids’ Lunch Boxes


Last updated on June 14th, 2024 at 10:10 am

With back-to-school season in full force, parents are scrambling to get their kids ready for the new year. Millennial mothers are no different—they are getting in on the action as many more of them are now sending their children off on school buses for the first time.

Influenster, a product discovery and reviews destination, conducted an online survey with its Millennial Mom group to better understand how they plan to prepare lunches for their little ones this fall. In addition, primary data from its reviews platform was aggregated to reveal the top reviewed healthy food products.

The infographic shines light on what Millennial mothers prioritize in a lunchbox, how they pack lunches differently from their parents of the Baby Boomer generation, what food products they consider as healthy additions to lunch boxes, and how they go about making these purchase decisions.

Nutrition trumps convenience and price; gluten-free food surprisingly doesn’t matter as much to Millennial moms.

Nine out of 10 Millennial moms prepare healthy lunch boxes for their children. Of this group of mothers, they prioritize nutrition (88 percent) as their main concern, when shopping for food to include in lunch boxes, above the more obvious price and convenience. Interestingly, given the gluten-free phenomenon that has swept our nation in recent years, these mothers ranked gluten-free considerations for their kids’ lunch boxes as the lowest priority (8 percent). Other important factors include: well-balanced (74 percent), freshness (72 percent), tastiness (69 percent), price (65 percent), convenience (52 percent), low sugar (43 percent), organic (29 percent), low fat (19 percent) and allergy-friendly (12 percent).

Six out of 10 Millennial moms pack their children’s lunch boxes differently from how their mothers packed theirs.

Nutrition triumphs again amongst this new generation of moms. Seventy-five percent of these mothers say that their lunch boxes are more nutritious than their mothers’, followed by 71 percent who choose different food products and 48 percent who go with different food brands. Thirty-seven percent of these moms say that their lunch boxes are more organic than their mothers’—this reveals that even though organic food products aren’t on the top of their minds when planning their children’s meals, these Millennial moms still think of their packed lunch boxes as more organic than their mothers’.

Millennial moms still prefer shopping in stores more than online.

The most digitally connected generation of mothers to date, Millennial mothers still choose to shop for their food the old-school way—pushing carts down shopping aisles. Here are their retail categories of choice: supermarket (88 percent), big-box retailer (81 percent), farmer’s market (42 percent), local deli (23 percent) and convenience store (13 percent). In contrast, only 7 percent opt to do their grocery shopping online (while this is a small percentage, it has grown significantly compared to previous years). Further poll questions reveal that most of these women are online researchers and then offline shoppers—57 percent of them do all their researching on the internet before they hit stores to buy the products.

Word of mouth has the most sway in affecting purchase decisions.

Given the proliferation of content in this information age, word of mouth (79 percent) is still the top influencer to help millennial moms make their shopping decisions. That is followed by online reviews (59 percent), social media (57 percent), brand websites (43 percent), television (37 percent), news websites (16 percent) and newspapers (15 percent).

Dairy ranks amongst the top healthy food products to include in lunch boxes.

When polled, Millennial moms ranked the following packaged foods as healthy lunch box inclusions: 1. Yogurt (87 percent) 2. Cheese (82 percent) 3. Cereal/Granola (72 percent) 4. Juice boxes (70 percent) 5. Peanut butter (67 percent) 6. Dried fruits (54 percent) 7. Milk (51 percent) 8. Nuts (49 percent).

When pulled from Influenster.com, these are the top food products that Millennial moms view as healthy:

1) Kraft Mozzarella String Cheese

2) Planters Honey Roasted Peanuts

3) SkinnyPop Popcorn

4) Blue Diamond Almonds Whole Natural

5) Pepperidge Farm Goldfish 100-Calorie Cheddar Snack Cracker Pouches

6) Ocean Spray Craisins Blueberry

7) Bear Naked All Natural Whole Grain Granola

8) Eden Foods Dry Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

9) Del Monte No Sugar Added Mandarin Oranges in Artificially Sweetened Water

10) belVita Breakfast Biscuits 5 Pack Blueberry Breakfast Biscuits

About the author

Shelby Team

The Shelby Report delivers complete grocery news and supermarket insights nationwide through the distribution of five monthly regional print and digital editions. Serving the retail food trade since 1967, The Shelby Report is “Region Wise. Nationwide.”

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