asian family cooking

The Asian-American population is growing three times as fast as the Hispanic pool, and their buying power is expected to increase from $825 billion to $1 trillion in the next few years.  That said, one of the areas these consumers are having a significant impact on is the American cuisine.  Therefore, brands in retail, restaurant and dietary industries should have a comprehensive understanding for this shift before they can reach Asian-American consumers.  Below, you’ll find three trends that showcase the shift toward an integration of Asian and American cuisine.

Filling the shopping cart

In 2017, over a quarter of Asian-American consumers purchased dry noodles, Asian frozen entrees and rice mixes.  The irony? Non-Hispanic White consumers over-indexed this segment in their purchase of all the preceding ingredients.  Nearly half of all non-Hispanic White households bought rice mixes, compared to 27% of Asian-Americans.  With a growing multicultural audience in the U.S., Millennials and Gen Z are acquiring new tastes for foods.  Moreover, the integration of Asian cuisine in the U.S. is expanding into restaurant chains and university cafes.

Organic and vegetable-focused

Asian-Americans purchase organic food at a rate of over 50% higher than the total population.  Their diets are mainly comprised of fresh foods over frozen ones.  These consumers purchase 72% more fresh vegetables, 29% more fresh fruits than the overall population and about one fifth live vegetarian lifestyles.  Most Asian-Americans prefer to buy food that is locally grown or produced.  However, the desire for traditional foods such as seaweed and Asian curries has influenced chain grocery outlets to sell these items along with kimchi, kombucha, ramen and matcha.

Ties to culture

Descending from over 40 countries, food and diet play a critical role in how Asian-Americans remain connected with their culture.  Several Asian cultures promote a healthy, holistic lifestyle, which has grown appealing to many U.S. residents.  As such, neighborhoods across the nation have increasingly offered diverse Asian cuisines like Chinese, Japanese, Indian, Vietnamese and Korean to name a few.  Whether you’re intending on targeting the Asian-American segment, or all consumers interested in Asian cuisine, it’s essential that you know what items are in demand, and to which culture they correspond.

Sources: Nielsen, Fona International, Fast Casual

Asian Population Study