Generation Z is already emerging as a significant force in the industry. Understanding their attitudes and habits is crucial for restaurants and chefs to adjust their menus, communication, and services accordingly. Generation Z, born between 1997 and 2012, is the most nutritionally aware generation, making plant-based nutrition an essential success factor for sustainable gastronomy.
Who is Generation Z? According to Wikipedia, anyone born between 1997 and 2012.
What about consumer behavior? Typical "Z-lers" do not make a purchase decision without first consulting with their network of friends - online and offline. They also want immediate satisfaction of their needs (Wikipedia).
What does this mean for resturants?
#1: Individualistic, health- and environmentally conscious
Generation “Z-ers” are highly individualistic, health- and environmentally conscious, and always seeking immediate satisfaction of their needs. They prefer fresh, customizable menus with full-bodied flavors and interesting dishes. Individualization of dishes and the ability to vary the sizes of the dishes are their top gastronomic priorities. International cuisine is no longer a unique selling point, as diversity and internationality are commonplace for them.
Generation Z was raised by parents who preferred natural foods as snacks for their children. That’s why they react positively to buzzwords like "fresh," "organic," and "sustainable." Healthy eating is crucial for them, and plant-based dishes are a perfect fit. Moreover, they prefer environmentally friendly and sustainable restaurants, with recyclable packaging, regional and seasonal dishes, and a customizable variety of plant-based food
#2 Snacks, snacks, snacks
One of the top trending concepts in food is snackification, especially among Generation Z. While the previous generations saved mainly on side dishes, Generation Z prefers to eat a lot of small things between meals and combines side dishes as a main course, very similar to the Mediterranean food culture or the mezze of Levantine cuisine.
Restaurants can offer smaller portions, smoothies, fresh dips, vegetable skewers, smaller bowls, or other all-day snack menus to cater to their preferences.
#3 Recommendations are everything.
Generation Z heavily relies on recommendations and comments found on social media platforms like Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter. Hence, a strong presence on these channels, engaging with guests, and creating photogenic, individual, and unusual plant-based dishes, burgers, and mezze, with a sustainable and conscious image, can help your restaurant get recommended and increase footfall.