Foodies in the U.S.: Restaurant Foodies
Published Jan 1, 2009 | 192 Pages | Pub ID: LA2088291
For most self-dubbed ‘foodies’, food offers more than mere nourishment. It offers foodies the chance to make new friends, to explore the world, and even to ask ethical questions. Foodies use food to define who they are in greater society. The term ‘foodie’, which first appeared in the early 1980s, has entered the English language to describe this new type of food lover and a surrounding culture of food. Restaurant foodies are distinct from gourmets in that their interests tend to be more wide ranging. Foodies enjoy high-end gourmet food, to be sure, but they also seek out hole-in-the-wall BBQ shacks, taco trucks and Chinatown markets. Foodies enjoy the thrill of the hunt and being the first to catch on to new food trends, and restaurants considered “authentic” carry the most prestige in the foodie world. As authenticity frequently equates to a degree of separation from big food conglomerates and corporate marketing campaigns, foodies can be an elusive target for marketers. At the same time, foodies are a desirable demographic, as they are avid, tech-savvy consumers who embrace all sorts of trends, not just those that are food-related, and who introduce these trends to their communities and peers.
Through an analysis of selected lifestyle statements in Simmons Market Research Bureau’s national consumer survey, Packaged Facts has determined that 14% of U.S. adults—or 31 million—are foodies.