Who’s skipping breakfast and why?

October 13, 2011

Young adult males (ages 18–34) are the most likely among all adults to be breakfast skippers, according to a recent study conducted by market research company The NPD Group. Within this segment of the population, 28% do not eat a morning meal.

Overall, about one out of 10 consumers—or 31 million people—skip breakfast, according to NPD's Morning Mealscape 2011 study. The reasons why people skip breakfast are predictable—they're not hungry or thirsty or they're too busy or running late.

Those least likely to pass on breakfast are females ages 55+; only 10% do not eat breakfast. Among children, the incidence of breakfast skipping increases as children age; those ages 13–17 have the highest incidence, with 14% of them forgoing the a.m. meal option.

"With 31 million people skipping breakfast each day, there is a significant opportunity for food and beverage marketers to reach these consumers," says Dori Hickey, Director, Product Management at NPD and author of the study report. "Marketing messages emphasizing the importance of having a morning meal should be age and gender specific in order to increase their effectiveness."

Press release