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Hispanic influence and impact on America can be seen every day, but Hispanic Heritage Month is an important moment to reflect on the continued ways Hispanics shape American culture, especially as this influential audience continues to grow. In fact, Hispanics represent nearly half of all multicultural consumers in the U.S., and one in four Americans will be Hispanic by 2045. This incredible growth marks a need for brands and retailers alike to authentically connect with Hispanic consumers, and Cargill in partnership with Rumba Meats®, its food brand focused on celebrating Hispanic tradition and family, is doing just that.

Meaningfully Connecting with the Hispanic Consumer

Cargill’s protein business has created a marketing and insights team to look across multicultural segments to help retailers drive growth through meaningful insights. The fresh meat case is an interesting lens to look at Hispanic culture given they over index in meat purchases and consumption – they are frequent purchasers of fresh meat, spending 9% more dollars on meat purchases. But it is not so cut and dry. Despite fresh meat being an integral part of celebrations and traditions, Hispanics under index for shopping at traditional grocery stores, demonstrating to retailers that there is an untapped opportunity to meaningfully connect with them – especially within the fresh meat case. When retailers understand the in-depth make up of their Hispanic shopper, everyone benefits:

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  •  Local Shopper Understanding Enables Assortment Decisions in the Fresh Meat Case: Understanding who the local Hispanic consumer is can help ensure that the most relevant cuts are prioritized in the fresh meat case. Retailers must first understand not only the broad multicultural shopper segments in each market, but also the country of origin and acculturation of that segment. A successful assortment for Hispanic consumers may look vastly different in Miami, Florida, verses Houston, Texas, as specific cultural dishes are associated with unique cuts and preparations of meat.
  • Marketing Specific Recipes Deepens Customer Loyalty: Depth of consumer understanding also maps back to how consumers shop. For example, Hispanic shoppers may request a specific cut through the lens of a traditional recipe. Such as asking the butcher for “meat for lomo saltado” instead of requesting “flap meat.”
  • The Fresh Meat Case Influences Other Purchases: Fresh meat is often considered one of the most important ingredients or elements of the dish – access to the right cuts and the right merchandising can unlock purchases throughout the store as shoppers seek convenience when preparing for a specific recipe.

Cargill’s understanding into how Hispanic consumers shop for protein will continue to grow through ongoing primary consumer research and cultural inputs from its employee resource groups to help guide retail customers. One such resource group is Cargill’s Protein Hispanic Latino Council, a group of dynamic leaders who work across the organization to create a community of inclusion and honor Hispanic contributions.

Furthermore, as the Hispanic population continues to grow, so does its impact on the larger cultural cuisine in America. For the first time ever, Hispanic is the favorite ethnic cuisine among younger consumers and is even preferred over Italian dishes. This shift in craving provides a unique opportunity for retailers to educate and inspire mainstream consumers on the use cases of authentic fresh meat products. 

“We also work with our retail partners on the best ways to provide information and inspiration both in-store and online, whether it is bilingual product naming, ‘great for’ Hispanic application callouts, or even inspiration for in-store displays such as tamales set for Día de Los Muertos,” said Tammy Gonzales, Cargill’s Rumba Meats® marketing and multicultural manager. 

Cargill and Rumba Meats® Fuel Investment in Hispanic Community 

More than just offering customer-centric recommendations, Cargill’s Rumba Meats® brand rooted in culture, tradition, and heritage, develops products that stem from insights specific to the Hispanic community. Furthermore, it also establishes strategic programs and partnerships to deepen ties with the Hispanic shopper. Driven by the insight that Hispanic consumers appreciate organizations who engage through charitable efforts especially during Hispanic Heritage Month – and ones that revolve around youth and have a local impact – Rumba Meats® for the fourth consecutive year is uplifting Hispanic youth by donating college scholarships to students across the country by partnering with the United States Hispanic Leadership Institute (USHLI). “As a brand rooted in Hispanic heritage and tradition, we have a great responsibility to empower this incredible community of Hispanic youth. Best of all, we are already seeing the undeniable impact these scholarships have had on students and their commitment to helping their Hispanic communities,” said Gonzales.

From its investment efforts in Hispanic youth, to unearthing powerful insights to help its retail partners better serve the multicultural shopper, Cargill continues to be energized by the endless opportunities to provide thought leadership to its customers so both can partner together to grow by better serving the multicultural shopper. 

To learn more about Rumba Meats®, visit

Sources: Nielsen Homescan Panel Data, April 2021. Cargill Proprietary Research, January 2020 & November 2020.  Datassential Annual Trends, 2022. U.S. Census Bureau Historical Statistics of the United States, 2019 American Community Survey & National Population Projections, Bureau of Economic Analysis, Current Population Survey, Collage Group Network Analysis.