Considering the spending power of children and teens, it should come as no surprise that major manufacturers are focusing their sights on this valuable demographic. With young people registering 4.4 eating occasions per day, snack makers have ample opportunities to reach them.
Though often lumped together as a single demographic, the eating habits of children 12 and older differ significantly from their younger peers, according to “U.S. Kids’ and Teens’ Eating Habits,” a report by Mintel International Group (Chicago).
The 12-14 group demonstrates eating patterns that are more “teen-like” (i.e., less fruit, more chips and candy, eating more with friends). Those 11 and younger, however, primarily are influenced by what their parents want them to eat. As a result, the under-12 demographic consumes a wider range of foods. While they still eat sweets and salty snacks, they also have a much greater incidence of healthful food consumption