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Trends > Emerging Markets

What US Latino women really want…from a beverage

By Ben Bouckley+

02-Aug-2013
Last updated the 02-Aug-2013 at 15:23 GMT

'US Latinas are in the driver’s seat with better education, better income, and better jobs', Nielsen claims (Picture Credit: Nielsen)
'US Latinas are in the driver’s seat with better education, better income, and better jobs', Nielsen claims (Picture Credit: Nielsen)

Latino women or ‘Latinas’ are outpacing their male peers in terms of education and employment in the US, over-index in beverage buying and hold the purse strings, a new Nielsen report reveals.

Nielsen’s Latina Power Shift report reveals that 86% of Latinas told the data company they were the primary household spending decision makers, making them pivotal to the US’s $1.2tn annual buying power in the market.

As a key growth engine, the report authors explain that Hispanic women are expected to comprise 30% of the US population by 2060, with the non-Hispanic white percentage dropping to 43%.

Health and nutrition worries

Within the beverage sector, Latinas are ‘primarily responsible’ for 55% of beverage purchases, with Latino males responsible for 41% and joint decisions accounting for 4%, Nielsen states.

The respective numbers are higher in the food sector – 67%, 33% and 1%, and Nielsen insists Latinas differ from the overall US female population due to their family-centered value system and ‘do it all’ mindset.

Latinas over-index in beverage buys compared to non-Hispanic white females, Nielsen add, especially in juices (chilled and shelf-stable, 150, 148), bottled water (139) and non-carbonated soft drinks (129).

The figures reflect the Hispanic female dollar market share indexed to Non-Hispanic white female heads of household, and reflects Nielsen Homescan data for the whole of 2012.

In fact, Latinas over-index across every category – wine (116), beer (115), milk (108), coffee (104), tea (103), carbonates (102) – except for liquor (100).

Latinas’ cross-cultural dexterity

Health and nutrition is a “primary concern” for the group, with one third of Latinas looking to lose weight by dieting, one third looking for organic/natural products and one quarter counting calories.

“Not only are Latinas increasingly their family’s breadwinner and decision maker, but they still embrace their traditional role as nurturer and family caretaker, and often espouse products that make themselves and their families look and feel their best.”

Nielsen stresses the need for brand to recognize Latinas purchase power, and its growing predominance within modern American families, and to embrace cross-cultural and linguistic dexterity.

“Do not assume Latinas will assimilate: 'ambicultural' is the new battleground where two languages and two cultures are better than one.”

The firm also encourages companies to use ‘cross channels’ to reach Latinas, employing a full range of mass and social media channels.