Photos by Nastasic and David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Survey says Gen Z is all about fried chicken

Jeremy Glass
October 23, 2018

Looks like teens are doing more than dabbing, sexting, and bringing about a massive shift in the political landscape across America. Fresh off the presses of the Piper Jaffray 35th Semi-Annual Taking Stock With Teens Survey, Spring 2018, it was found that Chick-fil-A outranked Starbucks as a hotspot for upper-income teens.

Of the 6,000 teens surveyed, the average age of these chicken-loving youths hovered around 16.4 and mostly came from households making around $66,300 annually. On the other side of things, 9% of teens coming from an average-income household preferred Starbucks to Chick-fil-A, which only 8% of those surveyed preferred.

So, what does this mean for Generation Z? For one thing, kids are buying more. This year’s survey found that spending amongst teenagers has gone up 6% from the fall. Along with the popularity of Chick-fil-A, Nike dominated the charts with top clothing and footwear brands, with American Eagle and Vans following, in each respective category.

The popularity, growth, and overall trajectory of Chick-fil-A is on the rise. A recent Forbes article reported the Atlanta-based chain average sales per restaurant in 2017 broke $4.4 million—$2 million more than McDonald’s and $3.3 million more than KFC. The same article reported the purveyors of chicken (and key lime pie milkshakes) are well on their way to becoming the “third-largest quick-service restaurant in the country.”

Displacing a legacy brand like Starbucks is no small feat either; the coffee company had dominated the top of the list of restaurant brands amongst average-income teens in every Jaffray survey since 2011. The times are changing and the kids have spoken: coffee is out and fried chicken is in. Watch your back, Dunkin’ Donuts. Gen Z is coming for you.

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