More Meals Purchased at Foodservice Outlets Are Being Eaten At Home

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More Meals Purchased at Foodservice Outlets Are Being Eaten At Home

eating at home

CHICAGO — For a variety of reasons — like streaming media, working from home or staying clear of the shopping crowds — U.S. consumers are staying home, meaning they're eating more meals at home that are purchased from restaurants and foodservice outlets.

For the year ended September 2018, restaurant meals consumed in-home accounted for 32 percent of all traffic and increased visits by 2 percent, while dining at a restaurant represented 37 percent of all visits and remained flat compared to last year, according to the NPD Group's ongoing foodservice market research, CREST.

Seventy-one percent of U.S. consumers who chose to eat at home were at home prior to eating the restaurant meal, NPD found. Adult, single person parties with incomes of $100,000 or above are driving the majority of restaurant meals eaten at home increases, while families and groups of five or more make up 31 percent of foodservice meals eaten at home.

The 2-percent increase in eaten at home restaurant meals is reflected across restaurant segments, both quick service and full service. Although dinner still represents almost half of all at-home occasions for foodservice, morning meal and lunch showed the strongest growth in the period, according to NPD.

At the top of the list of menu items eaten at home from quick service restaurants are French fries, burgers and pizza, while Chinese/Asian/Indian, rice and French fries were the top menu items from full service restaurants eaten at home.

"Home is where the heart is when it comes to U.S. consumers but they still look for the convenience that is offered by a ready-made restaurant meal," said David Portalatin, NPD food industry advisor and author of Eating Patterns in America. "We don't look for this trend to change anytime soon and operators and foodservice manufacturers can take advantage of the stay-at-home movement by offering at-home eaters with innovative ready-to-eat meal solutions and a greater degree of convenience."