Tetra Pak: Top Six Millennial Needs

‘Millennials are coveted by major brands and represent a significant and disruptive force for the F&B industry’

By Jenny Eagle

- Last updated on GMT

Tetra Pak: Top Six Millennial Needs

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Tetra Pak has characterized six underlying needs of Millennials who are the largest and most influential generation of consumers, and explains how to target them through product formulation and packaging to attract their attention.

It defines Millennials as consumers aged between 20 and 35 - the first generation to have grown up with the internet and digital technology and one which bore the brunt of the financial crisis in 2008.

It is the combination of these two factors that has driven the development of their underlying needs.

Tetra Pak Six Millennial Needs

  1. Global ​Millennials are the first globalised generation to have grown up in a world where technology makes 2,000 miles as close as two. This has elevated the outlook and network of influencers that Millennials have to a truly global scale. More than half have friends that live abroad and 20% have spent time studying or working overseas.
  2. Connected ​Millennials are the first digitally native generation. They are more connected and more reliant on digital technology than any other generation and the majority don’t remember a time before mobile internet. Today, more than 84% of Millennials own a smart phone and report checking in for updates more than 40 times daily. As a result, they expect brands to be just as connected.
  3. Social online & offline ​Millennials are highly social and consistently look to their peers for guidance and recommendations on shopping decisions. Millennials view online social activity as an important supplement to the offline world, with 54% of Millennials stating that social networking has helped them to build stronger relationships with friends and family.
  4. Hungry for experiences ​Millennials are often regarded as more adventurous, compared to older generations, always on the lookout for new products and services, searching for novelty and fun even in everyday products. For instance, 65% of Millennials in the USA said they are interested in trying everything from opera to rock-climbing compared to just 39% of other generations. Millennials have a greater interest in travel, which often translates itself into adventurous eating habits, demonstrating how they want to buy an experience rather than a product.
  5. Impulse shoppers ​This is a generation characterized by impulse – whether it’s planning meal and food purchases on a day by day basis or deciding to treat themselves to a special purchase, Millennials are interested in convenience. They look for food and drink options that are easy, simple to deal with and fit into ever busier lives. As a result, 41% of Millennials are prepared to pay more for products that make their lives easier.
  6. Smart consumersn ​Millennials are savvy shoppers, who are able to navigate the balance between price and value. They’re interested in a healthy and more environmentally friendly lifestyle, with 53% of Millennials reporting that they would like to do more for the environment but that they don’t know how.

Focus on addressing different products for different occasions

Tetra Pak claims brands are responding to Millennial consumption patterns through innovation and differentiation, with a focus on addressing different products for different occasions.

For example, Unilever’s AdeS, a combination of soya milk and fruit juice, has become a big success in Latin America, holding onto around 50% of market share in Brazil in a category that has grown by 19% a year.


Unilever produces varying sizes and formulations of AdeS for different consumer groups, recently launching a portion-sized version in Tetra Prisma Aseptic DreamCap, specifically targeting teenagers and young adults for out of home consumption.

Millennials are also major consumers of sport and energy drinks. For example, coconut water has benefited from its positioning as a natural alternative for recovery during and after physical activity.

Coffee, especially iced coffee as a category, is a beneficiary of the Millennial need for convenience. Jimmy’s Coffee in the UK has cornered a profitable market for on-the-go consumption, whilst in Pakistan Nescafe Cold Coffee has successfully positioned itself as a trendy alternative for cooling off in the hot summer and as a treat for the evening meal during Ramadan.

Nescafe Cold Coffee

These trends are creating new opportunities for brands to launch interesting new takes on conventional products that meet Millennial desires, tapping into the need for engaging and more convenient options.

It claims Millennial consumers look for five key attributes when picking a single portioned package off the shelf; how the package looks, how easy it is to hold and carry, how easy it is to drink from, whether it can be resealed and how environmentally-friendly it is.

For example, younger Mexican Millennials are more likely to purchase a product based on its appearance over other factors such as; safety, practicality and size. In addition, the combination of both the visual appeal of a package and its suitability for drinking from it directly, are significant factors that influence purchasing in China, Indonesia and Brazil.

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