Thursday, June 24, 2010

New Survey Indicates Americans are Cooking More

I have taken part, as a kitchen designer expert, in RICKI surveys in the past. Looks like they have created a new consumer survey with results that anyone thinking about a kitchen remodel should note for their planning:

We are cooking at home more in the current economic environment. That's good for our health as well as our pocketbooks.

Most everyone (65%) wants to be able to eat in the kitchen, so space and seating need to be planned. Probably 100% would like to be able to eat in their kitchens if they had the space.
Meal planning takes place in the kitchens of 62% of consumers, so cookbook storage and grocery lists and coupons need to have a place to live in the kitchen.             

Consumers planning their kitchens should think about storage space for medications and vitamins in the kitchen. Who knew? Our household keeps all of our meds and vitamins in the kitchen and I guess lots (49%) of others do too!

Also storage for pet foods and a place to feed them (38%) and sorting mail (38%).

Don't forget these essential considerations when planning your new kitchen and  you won't be at a loss to figure out where to put them when it's all said and done.


July is National Culinary Arts month. With that in mind, RICKI, the Research Institute for Cooking & Kitchen Intelligence, took a look at what’s going on in the kitchen these days, based on findings from its recent study, Remodelers 360: How Americans Use their Kitchens. The study was conducted among nearly 3,000 U.S. consumers and has been conducted every other year since 2006.

Some highlights from the study include the following:
  • Americans are experimenting with new recipes. Around two-thirds of survey respondents say they try new recipes at least once a month (67%). According to RICKI’s Executive Director, Brenda Bryan, “This figure has been consistent study to study – around two-thirds of Americans try a new recipe at least monthly.”
  • Nearly a quarter of survey respondents (23%) agree that this statement describes them ‘completely’: ‘I love to cook and try new recipes’. “Women and those under the age of 35 are significantly more likely than their counterparts to say they can relate to this statement,” says Bryan. This percentage does not vary by income level.
  • More people are eating at home now compared to two years ago. The frequency of eating at home has increased significantly since the 2008 wave of Remodelers 360, jumping from 43 percent of respondents saying they are eating at home more in 2008 up to 59 percent in 2010.
  •  Besides cooking meals, eating and planning meals are the most common activities taking place in the kitchen (65% eating and 62% planning meals), followed by taking medications or vitamins (49%), talking in-person with family or friends (46%), talking on the phone (43%), caring for pets (38%) and sorting mail (38%). And women and higher income people are doing all of these activities in the kitchen more than others.
  •  Of the 17 kitchen activities measured, five declined significantly in the latest survey compared to 2006 and 2008 levels: taking medication or vitamins, talking on the phone, reading newspapers or magazines, entertaining, and caring for plants.
  •  On the other hand, the use of computers in the kitchen has almost doubled (from 6% in 2006 to 11% currently).
“Despite the hectic pace of modern life, the kitchen remains the center of activity in the home,” according to Bryan. “Food is central to our well-being and something that is a hobby for many. Just look at the boom in enrollment at cooking schools. At the Culinary Institute of America for example, enrollment increased 50 percent in the past six years. Many culinary schools have had to add classes in the past few years to meet demand. And another 24/7 food channel was launched this year. I think all of this adds up to a growing base of foodies and good news for those in cooking- and food-related industries.”

NOTE: Detailed PowerPoint slides (charts and graphs) of select findings are available upon request.

Methodology: 2010 Remodelers 360: Trend Report was conducted among 2,906 American consumers between the ages of 18 and 64 from February 12 through March 2, 2010. The study was conducted online in partnership with a leading national online panel company, GMI (Global Market Insite, Inc.), headquartered in Seattle, WA.

About RICKI: The Research Institute for Cooking & Kitchen Intelligence (RICKI) is an independent, membership-based organization of manufacturers, retailers, wholesalers and publications whose revenues come from sales related to activities that take place in the kitchen, including kitchen remodeling.

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