Hispanics Perceive Healthy Foods as Less Tasty

CHICAGO — Less-acculturated Hispanics define nutrition in terms of quality and quantity and think of healthy foods as less tasty, according to research from the NPD Group.

Foreign-born and Spanish-language dominant Hispanics in particular agree that filling and eating everything on a plate conveys that a person “eats well” and a nutritious meal was served.

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The perception is tied to the role food and beverage play in the preservation of Hispanic culture and reconnection for family. Nearly half (46%) of less-acculturated Hispanics agree that almost everything that is very good for you doesn’t taste very good. But this view changes as Hispanics acculturate. For example, 31% of bilingual Hispanics and just 11% of English-dominant Hispanics agree that foods that are good for you don't taste good.

With diet-related health issues prominent among the demographic, retailers should merchandise products that align with how Hispanics think about healthy eating, suggests Darren Seifer, NPD food and beverage analyst and author of It’s Mealtime with U.S. Hispanics report. “Bilingual nutritional information on products and in-store will help, but it’s also important to keep in mind less-acculturated Hispanics’ attitudes that healthy isn’t tasty or in some cases as nutritious,” said Seifer in a press release.

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