Latin America’s population has grown by 40% over the last 20 years, rising to 430 million in 1998. Although growth in per capita income has slowed with no substantial reduction in poverty, powerful demographic patterns are reshaping society and bringing about changes in consumption habits. In Mexico and Brazil, the two most populous countries, young people are a majority of the population. Urbanization continues to grow, bringing with it new tastes. An overwhelmingly young population is particularly susceptible to modern trends that develop in big cities that are closely connected by the Internet, television and other media to fashions in the developed world, especially the US. Eighty percent of Latin Americans live in cities, compared with 67% in 1980. Since then, rural populations have declined in absolute numbers as well as in proportion to the total population.