The traditional death care industry, encompassing funeral homes, casket manufacturers, and other products and services related to death and burial, has seen profits decline over the last decade. In 2015, cremation rates surpassed traditional burial rates in the United States. The driving force behind those statistics are cost and the rise of environmentally conscious consumers. Here are a few other ways the death care industry is changing due to millennial involvement:
- Increase use of green burials which are more affordable, involve fewer synthetic chemicals and create less impact on the environment.
- A rise in “Positivity Funerals” having an underlying theme that funerals are a gift to the living. Rather than focusing on grieving over the loss, the attendees focus on celebrating the life of the deceased.
- Funerals and other rituals are becoming more interactive. Relatives and friends are invited to participate in the death care process. They can help to dress them, add make-up and even push the body into the cremation furnace. Mourners are encouraged to add gifts, memorabilia or handwritten letters to the casket.
- Shopping for pricing is also a trend on the rise. Sites like Funeralocity allow users to compare pricing for funeral home services based on zip code. This is driving down some of the costs.
- There is more diversity in the death care industry with approximately 60% of students in mortuary school being female in 2019, up from 5% in 1971.
- Advanced planning is becoming more of a priority at a younger age.
For assistance with funeral planning as part of a comprehensive estate planning package, please contact Stouffer Legal at 443-470-3599 in the Greater Baltimore area.