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Millennials are America’s consummate taste-makers, according to a a new nationwide consumer survey from Coast Packing Company and Ipsos Research confirming that taste is indeed tops for those ages 18 to 34.

Conducted in November, the study of 900+ millennials examined factors that appeal most to that demographic when dining out and when eating at home: taste, price, healthfulness and availability/convenience. Coast Packing is the number one supplier of animal fat shortenings in the Western United States.

Overall, taste is king both at home and in restaurants, cited as “most important” by 36 percent and 39 percent of respondents, respectively. Price ranks second for those dining out (35 percent) but is a bit less of a factor at home (27 percent). “Healthfulness” is a more significant consideration at home than when heading to a local eatery (20 percent to 13 percent), while convenience/availability is more of an issue at home than when dining out (17 percent to 13 percent)

“Whether you’re at a restaurant or in your own kitchen, the desire for the delicious remains paramount,” said Eric R. Gustafson, CEO of Coast Packing. “Although the ‘healthfulness’ option takes a back seat to taste and price in our survey, millennials are on the record demonstrating their openness to healthy animal fats, which, of course, has everything to do with taste.”

While the message for consumers may be that millennials follow their taste buds, the takeaway for the restaurant industry is that taste just barely edged out price as most decisive. Millennials are more cost-conscious than they are health-focused when they eat out, but health concerns rise in importance when prepping food in their own kitchen.

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