U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials use food and beverage to connect to their cultural roots.

Research shows that 60% of U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials use the same brands their foreign-born parents used.

U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials use food and beverage to connect to their cultural roots.


By Jose Villa

For the last year and half, I’ve been involved in a nationwide research initiative focused on Hispanic Millennials. Our research has focused on understanding how Hispanic Millennials differ from “mainstream,” Asian and African-American Millennials, as well as older Hispanics (35+). We dive deep into attitudes, behavior and motivations related to healthcare, financial services and food, beverage and alcohol consumption. Some of the key findings of our Hispanic Millennial Project research include:

Hispanic Millennials are optimistic and strongly believe in the American dream.

Hispanic Millennials have complex and nuanced views of health, wealth and success.

Foreign-born Hispanic Millennials make up a large and distinct sub-segment of Hispanic Millennials.

There are numerous and deep cultural, behavioral and psychographic points of tension that characterize Hispanic Millennial lives.

It is around these points of tension that we identified an overarching and central tension characterizing Hispanic Millennials: they struggle with a need to fit in with mainstream culture, while trying to maintain their cultural identity. This struggle is particularly acute among U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials, who find a significant gap between their desire to stand out as Latino and how close they feel to Latino culture.

As we have expanded our research, we tried to answer the question of how Hispanic Millennials try to find cultural connection. Answering this question has the potential to uncover the Holy Grail for Hispanic Millennial engagement: understanding the role of culture and ethnicity in their behavior and purchase decisions.

Our fourth wave of the research project identified a powerful way Hispanic Millennials connect with their Latino culture: food and beverages. As we explored Hispanic Millennial cultural impact and shopping behavior associated with food, beverage, and alcohol consumption, we identified that attitudes and behavior related to food and beverages help define Hispanic Millennials:

A majority (60%) consider themselves “foodies”

They do all or most of household’s grocery shopping (74%) and spend the most on groceries ($149/week)

They use recipes (80%), particularly from their family (56%)

They have varied tastes as it relates to alcohol: beer is their alcoholic beverage of choice (51%), but they are apt to consume wine

(38%), craft beer (34%) and hard liquor (32%), with a preference for vodka and tequila

However, our most important finding was that U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials use food and beverage as a means of connecting to their cultural roots. While only 31% of U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials said they felt close to their Latino culture, they overwhelmingly (73%) stated that their cultural background influenced the food and beverage brands they purchased. This was reflected in their purchase of traditionally Hispanic products, such as Mexican hot sauce (65%), aguas frescas (46%), horchata (42%) and dulce de leche (39%), almost all of which they over-indexed compared to their foreign-born counterparts. Moreover, 60% of U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials indicated that they use many of the same food and beverage brands that their parents used.

We understand that food and culture are intertwined and our research findings support this. However, for U.S.-born Hispanic Millennials, food and beverage play a central role in helping them express a deep-seeded desire for connection to their Latino culture. The result is a potent opportunity for food, beverage and related industries to win the hearts and wallets of the coveted Hispanic Millennial.

Multicultural consumers are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population.


Multicultural consumers are transforming the U.S. mainstream. Propelled by the twin engines of population growth and expanding buying power, they are at the leading edge of converging demographic and social trends that are reshaping how marketers and advertisers use culture to connect with increasingly diverse customers. By understanding the cultural essence that drives multicultural consumer behavior today, marketers and advertisers are getting a glimpse of future market trends and forging a long-term relationship with the most dynamic and fastest growing segment of the U.S. consumer economy.

Media-savvy and socially empowered, multicultural consumers are:

Empowered and culture-driven shoppers, who over-index on a wide range of products and services.

Younger than the rest of the population, they are trendsetters and tastemakers across a broad range of categories, from food and beverage to beauty products.

In their prime, multicultural consumers are starting families, making plans and establishing long-term brand relationships.

Expressive and inclusive, which very often allows multicultural consumers to simultaneously maintain their cultural heritage and see themselves as part of the new mainstream, allowing them to mix and match endless choices and products to suit their effortless duality in lifestyles and tastes.

Connected and mobile savvy, multicultural consumers use their smartphones and other devices at much higher rates and more intensely than their non-multicultural counterparts.


Multicultural consumers are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population. Already over 120 million strong and increasing by 2.3 million per year, multicultural populations are the growth engine of the future in the U.S. Hispanics, African-Americans, Asian-Americans, and all other multiculturals already make up 38% of the U.S. population, with Census projections showing that multicultural populations will become a numeric majority by 2044.

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According to Nielsen, Hispanic consumers are the ‘Foundation’ for Beauty Category Sales


Beauty may be in the eye of the beholder as the saying goes, but for many, it doesn’t hurt to have a little help from the beauty aisle. Still, while 94% of U.S. households buy products from this category, consumers consider many beauty products discretionary expenditures.

Sales have declined across several beauty categories, including cosmetics, hair care, personal care appliances and shaving needs. However, sales in these same categories grew within Hispanic households. In fact, Hispanic spending in seven key beauty categories grew year-over-year. As a result, Latinos, who represent about 17% of U.S. population, are becoming more important to health care and beauty.

A strong culture of beauty influences Latino consumers’ decisions. Personal appearance is very important for them: They feel valued and grow their self-esteem when they “beautify themselves,” by getting a new hairstyle or wearing fragrances, creams or cosmetics. As a result, Hispanic consumers tend to use personal care products frequently and like to experiment with new products. For example, Hispanics are more likely to spend on hair care products than the general market, and they account for 16% of the total U.S. sales to this category. They also drive 14% of overall fragrances sales and 13% of cosmetics sales, the top two beauty care categories for Hispanic shopper spending.

In fact, half of the top 20 consumer packaged goods categories where Hispanics over-index, or spend more frequently than the general population, are in health and beauty. Latinos also purchase many different products within beauty at higher rates than the total U.S. market.


While many Hispanics in the U.S. share a cultural connection, this group is diverse with subgroups whose characteristics affect their shopping behaviors. So while Hispanics of all origins are outspending non-Hispanics in the beauty aisle, some nuances arise in product and store preferences.

Not surprisingly, for instance, Hispanic women over-index (121) versus total households in terms of cosmetics consumption, representing a huge opportunity for the beauty industry. But Hispanic men, who make up 8.2% of the U.S. population, are not far behind. Latinos are part of a larger trend—total U.S. male spending on beauty products increased 10% in the 12-month period ending June 2014. But like Latinas, Hispanic men also outspend their non-Hispanic counterparts in many beauty categories. Latino men increased their spending in seven key male beauty categories in 2014 from 2013, and beauty categories for men are contributing significantly to the category growth.

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The Hispanic population’s embrace of mobile technology is increasing community awareness


By Margaret Rock

The Hispanic population’s embrace of mobile technology is increasing community awareness and organization of specific political issues, which may catapult the group to the political forefront in the upcoming election cycle.

A survey last year by Pew Research found that more than 87 percent of English-speaking U.S. Hispanics owned a cell phone, as opposed to 80 percent of non-Hispanic whites, and 53 percent of them used mobile devices to access the Internet, compared to 33 percent of non-Hispanics. And, compared to the general U.S. population, Hispanics reportedly use their mobile phones more often and take advantage or more features on the devices.

“The use of cell phones builds upon the cultural affinity for close connections and opens the way for organized political and social action,” said a recently published report, “Connected Hispanics and Civic Engagement,” published by the Hispanic Institute, or HI.

The growing mobile networks centered on civic engagement comprise of “feature phones,” a less expensive smartphone which still has text messaging, e-mail, mobile web and social media features, as well as smartphones.

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Synergia’s Flor Lozano Speaks at Natural Products Expo West


Comcast markets Spanish-language TV service


Comcast launches a national marketing campaign for its offerings of Hispanic channels and a Spanish-language website.

Poll: Hispanics Tend to Hold Few Investments


By Michael A. Fletcher

Washington Post Staff Writer

As the economy emerges from the recession and the national debate turns to limiting the cost of the social safety net, only one in four African Americans and one in six Hispanics reported owning stocks, bonds or mutual funds, a new poll shows.

In addition, only 46 percent of blacks and 32 percent of Hispanics said they had an individual retirement account or any similar retirement arrangement, according to a new Washington Post-Kaiser Family Foundation-Harvard University poll. Half of whites said they had stocks, bonds or mutual funds, and two in three said they had IRAs, 401(k)s or similar holdings.

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Strains for Hispanic Caregivers


By Karen Stabiner

The New York Times

Fabiola Santiago lives in the Miami suburbs, two miles from her 81-year-old mother and 87-year-old father, whom she looks after. As the single mother of three grown daughters, she might live in the city or in Miami Beach if she had no family responsibilities — but to her, that’s like saying she’d fly if she woke up tomorrow with wings. It’s a fantasy.

For Ms. Santiago, 51, as for many other Hispanic adults, familialismo — the expectation that family members will support and assist one another, including aging relatives — defines adult life. “Family takes care of family,” she said.

Her parents fled Cuba in 1969, bringing Ms. Santiago and her brother to the United States. When Ms. Santiago’s first daughter was born, her mother quit her job to care for the child, enabling Ms. Santiago to pursue a career in journalism. Eventually she became a staff writer at The Miami Herald.

“My parents left everyone they loved and everything they had so that my brother and I could live in a democratic country,” said Ms. Santiago. “How could I not take care of them now?”

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Latino? Hispanic? A matter of opinion


By Tatiana Pina and Paul Edward Parker

Hispanic or Latino? Do people prefer one over the other?

Roberto R. Ramirez, head of the ethnicity and ancestry branch of the U.S. Census Bureau’s Population Division, says, “They are considered interchangeable,” by the Census.

Do Hispanics or Latinos feel the same way, or do they have a preference? Do they give it much thought these days?

Sen. Juan Pichardo, 44, who was born in the Dominican Republic and came here as a teenager, says that for him, the two words have become interchangeable enough that people don’t think about them as much.

“Latino and Hispanic are pretty much the same. Early on, about 10 or 15 years ago, that used to be the question. ‘Are you Hispanic or Latino?’ As people did soul searching, we see that we are descendents of Spanish-speaking people. The conclusion is that they are interchangeable. You could identify with both. I think we put it to bed.”

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Latinos and blacks more likely to access the Web by cellular phones

By Jesse Washington, Associated Press
When the personal computer revolution began decades ago, Latinos and blacks were much less likely to use one of the marvelous new machines. Then, when the Internet began to change life as we know it, these groups had less access to the Web and slower online connections — placing them on the wrong side of the “digital divide.”

Today, as mobile technology puts computers in our pockets, Latinos and blacks are more likely than the general population to access the Web by cellular phones, and they use their phones more often to do more things.

But now some see a new “digital divide” emerging — with Latinos and blacks being challenged by more, not less, access to technology.

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US electoral map gives Hispanics more heft


WASHINGTON DC – The new electoral map that emerged from the 2010 US census favors Hispanics, the largest US minority group, as some states in which they live will win more representation in Congress, a study found Wednesday.

States with growing populations such as Texas and Florida will pick up extra congressional seats, while some northern states such as Ohio and Iowa are set to lose seats under a redistricting system ahead of the 2012 elections.

The study by the Pew Hispanic Center found that Hispanic voters are almost three times more numerous in those states that will pick up congressional seats and electoral college votes, than in states that will have to shed seats.

While 15.2 percent of eligible voters — those US citizens over 18 — are Hispanics in states that increased their political influence, they account for only 5.4 percent of the electorate in states that lost electoral heft, it said.

For example, Florida will pick up two seats and Nevada will gain one; both are states that played an important role in the 2008 presidential vote and in the November mid-term elections.

The 2010 census — a national one is held once every 10 years — counted 308 million Americans, up nine percent from a decade earlier. More than 51 percent of the growth was among Hispanics.

Of the 48.4 million Hispanics, 20.1 million are currently eligible to vote.

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Televisa Completes Univision Stake Acquisition


By Mansha Daswani

NEW YORK: Mexican media giant Grupo Televisa has completed its investment in Univision, which was first announced in October, as well as expanded and extended its programming licensing agreement with the U.S. Hispanic broadcaster.

As previously announced, Grupo Televisa has invested $1.2 billion in Univision Communications for a 5-percent equity stake and debentures convertible into an additional 30-percent equity stake in the future. Televisa also secured the option to acquire an additional 5-percent equity stake.

The expanded program licensing agreement grants Univision an enhanced portfolio of exclusive U.S. Spanish-language broadcast rights, as well as exclusive U.S. Spanish-language digital rights to Televisa programming.

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New Hispanic majority in state’s schools


Local educators not surprised by new Hispanic majority in state’s schools
By Tracy Garcia, Staff Writer

Hispanics may have only recently become the official majority in California’s public school classrooms, but San Gabriel Valley and Whittier area schools have been watching that population shift take place for several years now.

And although some are now calling on school leaders to focus on these students to improve their chances of success in college or the workplace, area educators say they’ll keep working to get all students to the finish line – regardless of ethnicity.

“I think it’s always important to know who you’re teaching, as far as where they’re coming from and their background,” said Pasadena Unified School District board President Bob Harrison.

About 58 percent of PUSD’s 20,000-student enrollment in 2009-10 was Hispanic, according to state statistics.

That’s compared to the nearly 51 percent – or about 3.1 million – of California students who identified themselves as Hispanic in the 2009-10 school year, as reported by the California Department of Education last month.

By contrast, Hispanics made up about 37 percent of the state’s public school enrollment in the 1994-95 school year.

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Why You Can No Longer Sell to the Average American Household


Advertising Age
By Peter Francese

What will finally drive some growth in the housing industry? It might be nothing more dramatic than a release of demand that’s been pent-up since the start of the recession.

Last week the Census Bureau published results from a March survey that found 117.5 million households in the U.S., up a mere 0.3% from 2009. That’s about one-third the average annual increase over the past decade. Coming on the heels of an equally meager increase of 400,000 from 2008 to 2009, this suggests a coming wave of new households once the economy loosens.

As of March, 12 million American families are living with 21 million of their adult children, a record high. One fourth of those “kids” are age 25 or older. As the economy improves, most of these adult children will probably (hopefully?) leave the nest and jump start the housing market’s recovery.

Other noteworthy trends
The fraction of households that are married couples with children under age 18 is edging ever closer to just one in five households. The number of U.S. married couples with children has not changed in over 40 years. Now, as in 1967, there are 24.6 million of them.

One-person households, at 31.4 million, are significantly more numerous than married couples with children and now make up 27% of all households. The reason: People who live alone (most of whom are women) have more than tripled since 1967, while married couples with children have stagnated. Another reason is the aging population: The average age of people who live alone is 56.6 years old, and among ages 65 or older, almost half of all households (45%) are single individuals.

47.9% of Hispanic Households Subscribed to Broadband Last Year


WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. still faces a significant gap in residential broadband use that breaks down along incomes, education levels and other socio-economic factors, even as subscriptions among American households overall grew sevenfold from 2001 to 2009.

What’s more, even when controlling for key socio-economic characteristics, the U.S. continues to confront a racial gap in residential broadband use, with non-Hispanic white Americans and Asian-Americans more likely to go online using a high-speed connection than African-Americans and Hispanics.

Those are some of the key conclusions of a new analysis of Census data released Monday by the Commerce Department.

It found that the percentage of households that connect to the Internet using broadband grew to 63.5 percent in 2009 from 9.2 percent in 2001, reflecting increases across nearly all demographics.

The report — prepared by the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration and the Economics and Statistics Administration — is based on a Census survey of about 54,000 households conducted in October 2009.

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For Hispanics, the capital of opportunity


By Carol Morello and Dan Keating

Washington Post Staff Writers
Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Washington region, with the most affluent and one of the most highly educated Hispanic communities in the nation, has lots of people like Charles Vela.

A Salvadoran-born research engineer who runs his own consulting company, Expertech Solutions, Vela came Washington to work on a National Academy of Sciences brain-mapping project. He stayed to develop new ways for the IRS to handle tax returns, for the State Department to detect fraudulent visa applications and for NASA to operate its space telescope.

Now Vela earns a six-figure income, and he and his family live in Potomac, where he said he moved partly to give the children he mentors a taste of the affluence that a science career can bring.

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Myspace Beta Goes Bicultural


From HispanicPR Blog

Today Myspace announced a new brand, beta website, and a suite of products that together redefine the company as a social entertainment destination for Gen Y. Myspace is creating a rich, highly-personalized experience for people to discover content and connect with other fans who share similar interests. The entertainment experience will span music, celebrities, movies, television, and games and will be available through multiple platforms, including online, mobile devices and offline events.

With young Hispanics, 16 to 25, making up 18 percent of the U.S. Gen Y population and approximately 20 percent of Myspace users, the redesign will be particularly attractive to the fast-growing bicultural young Hispanic market segment. Hispanic youth are characterized as the country’s fastest-growing market segment; early adopters to social media; trend setters; and technology savvy, and the new Myspace content mix speaks directly to their entertainment interests.

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Chicago Hospital Names First Latino CEO


Norwegian American Hospital named José R. Sánchez as its new President and CEO.

Sánchez, who has built a distinguished 30-year career as a health care executive and urban health care expert, will be the city’s only Latino to serve as a hospital CEO.

As Chair of the Illinois Senate’s Public Health Committee, William Delgado (D-Chicago) noted the significance of the Norwegian American Hospital’s choice of Sánchez.

“It is an honor to welcome Sánchez to Chicago,” Delgado said.  “As the only hospital CEO in our city who is Latino, the Latino community should take pride in this development.  Sánchez brings a unique understanding of the health service needs and challenges facing urban communities.”

During Sánchez’ three-decade career as a health care leader, he has focused much of his effort addressing care and accessibility for low-income and disadvantaged populations.  Sánchez makes his way to Chicago from New York, where he served as senior vice president of the Generations/Northern Manhattan Network.  During his tenure, he oversaw three acute care hospitals of which two were level one trauma centers and 34 community-based health centers in East Harlem, Central Harlem and the South Bronx in New York City.

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Batanga’s new targets Spanish-dominant Hispanic women


Batanga is adding an owned and operated site called to its online ad network. is in Spanish and offers tips and advice about beauty, cooking recipes, home decoration and motherhood. Most articles have a practical edge (how-to form).

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In US, Hispanics live the longest, CDC says


AP Medical Writer

ATLANTA – U.S. Hispanics outlive whites by more than two years and blacks by more than seven, according to the government’s first calculation of Hispanic life expectancy.

The startling report released Wednesday is the strongest evidence yet of the “Hispanic paradox” — long life expectancy for a population that has a large share of poor, undereducated members. A leading theory is that Hispanics who manage to immigrate to the U.S. are among the healthiest from their countries.

A Hispanic born in 2006 could expect to live about 80 years and seven months, the government estimates. Life expectancy for a white is about 78, and for a black, just shy of 73 years.

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