Strolling the aisles of a neighborhood grocery store is a beaming mother and her shopping cart, provisions piling, yet neat and organized. She’s accompanied by a cherubic child who’s settled and well in a convenient and clean seat by the handlebars. However false the reality may be (see: new moms), it’s an image sewn in the fabric of America, and one that may gradually evolve to include men, who are taking a greater role in household shopping.
A new report from market research firm Packaged Facts finds that more men are becoming primary grocery shoppers for a family. David Sprinkle, a research director for Packaged Facts, cites “evidence that the percentage of men who are now the primary shoppers in their households has more than doubled in the past two decades.”
While men purchase fewer items than their counterparts, they are spending more. Packaged Facts writes that “overall, men tend to shop with greater weekly frequency and spend less time in the store,” often making interment trips to pick up pantry staples and food for immediate consumption, including dinner items like meat and vegetables.
Food and beverage marketers would be wise to focus their efforts on reaching millennial-aged (18-34 years old) men, who are driving the shift in shopping behavior. That demographic set is 161 percent “more likely than average to shop four or more times per week,” Packaged Facts reports. By comparison, “men aged 55 and older significantly under index in shopping as often, and may only shop once a week for groceries.
Young fathers are have played a significant role in spurring the boom of primary shoppers who are men. Millennial dads are significantly more likely to take on a heavy shopping role, heading to the grocery store four or more times a week as compared to the average shopper. Moreover millennial fathers aren’t just making quick trips: they over-index in shopping for more than an hour, according to Packaged Facts. They also spend more, $170 compared to $108 for all others, and at an increased cost per item, leading to the implication that millennial dads seek quality over value.