Family meals remain top priority, reveals survey

By staff reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Grocery shopping, Nutrition

Family meals remain a top priority for Americans, despite today's
hectic lifestyles, according to a new survey.

Conducted by market research firm Harris Interactive on behalf of SuperTarget, the survey reveals that food plays a key role in family life.

Parents of children under 18 typically reported eating dinner at home as a family about six times per week, and cooking dinner about five times per week. And around 84 percent of parents said they go grocery shopping with their family at least once a week, with 77 percent saying they cook dinner with their children equally as often.

"Families are busier than ever, and this research supports that eating dinner as a family is still a valued American tradition,"​ said Dr. Susan Mitchell, SuperTarget health and nutrition expert.

"Involving children in meal preparation and grocery shopping early in life will help establish healthy eating patterns and help kids make better food choices throughout life,"​ she added.

The latest findings are based on responses to an online survey conducted in March this year. Around 3,100 American adults took part in the survey, 550 of whom had children under the age of 18 living at home.

Target, which operates 1,418 stores throughout the US, commissioned the latest survey as part of its efforts to help customers streamline grocery shopping and meal planning in order to prepare healthy foods. Other initiatives include educational cards and recipe cards, located next to produce, which guide shoppers through ways to prepare their meals in under 30 minutes.

Indeed, supermarkets are increasingly being used as arenas for nutritional information and tips, targeting consumers at the point of purchase.

Last week, the US government announced plans to use supermarkets as a distribution points for a reader-friendly brochure designed to back up the MyPyramid nutritional guidelines.

The brochure- 'Your personal Path to Health'​- was developed by the Food Information Council (IFIC), the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) and the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion (USDA/CNPP).

It claims to provide "realistic, manageable"​ tips based on MyPyramid's five food groups, as well as managing portion sizes, eating out at restaurants and budgeting calories for sweet foods and beverages.

And the nutrition advocacy group Oldways recently prepared a booklet providing nutritional advice and specific product suggestions for Latino consumers in an effort to promote healthy eating habits based on its dietary pyramid for Latinos.

Related topics: Suppliers

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