Identifying the healthful eaters

Consumers in increasing numbers are clamoring for healthy and healthier food choices at restaurants, but who are these people? Consumer Reports on Eating Share Trends conducted a survey to find out exactly that, including age, gender and household income. Read on to see the results.

Consumers are increasingly seeking healthful food choices. Recently, NPD Group's Crest (Consumer Reports on Eating Share Trends) market research conducted a survey to determine who is seeking healthful fare at foodservice establishments. The results looked at the percentage of all health-conscious restaurant patrons fit into the total market. However, percentages do not tell the whole story, as each group has a different number of patrons. So we analyzed the data to develop an index number. An index of 100 represents the group with the lowest percentage of its members seeking healthful foods. An index of 200 means the group has twice the percentage of healthful eaters as the group represented by the 100 index.

Following are the results based upon age groups and household incomes:

As the charts show, healthful eaters skew toward upper-income households and people 18 to 34. Also, of all health-conscious restaurant customers, 55% were women versus 45% men.

This data has important implications for location-based entertainment and eatertainment facilities that target these prime health-conscious customers. To satisfy them, the menu needs to have options for healthy eating. This is especially crucial for play cafes and children's edutainment centers, where the primary adult customers are higher income mothers in their late 20s to mid-30s and for young adult concepts such as bowling lounges that target high income 20- and 30-somethings.