Waning interest in cooking at home creates opportunities, challenges for retailers, brands

In the fourth installment of FMI US Grocery Shopper Trends 2022, ‘Future Outlook,’ ​which looks at how the pandemic, strained economy, supply chain challenges and technology influence what and how consumers eat and buy food, shifting consumer priorities are uncovered to reveal new opportunities for food and beverage brands and retailers.

According to the research, the excitement many consumers felt about cooking at home during the early days of the pandemic, which led to the purchase of “new appliances and gadgets”​ and heightened interest in learning new skills and recipes, is beginning to fade – prompting more consumers to look for ways to “outsource” meal prep.

“As time has progressed, cooking fatigue has set in,”​ and now fewer people love or even like cooking with the percentage who said they love it dropping to 19% in 2022 compared to 23% last year and 22% saying they like it compared to 24% in 2020, the report reveals.

Likewise, the percentage of consumers who would prefer not to cook or consider it a chore has increased to a combined 25% in 2022 compared to 24% in 2020.

How much consumers enjoy cooking closely correlates with their skill level and interest, but the report notes “some might be due to inspiration or lack thereof” – ​opening a door for brands and retailers to provide inspiration through online ‘shoppable recipes’ that link shopping lists to TikTok videos and other social media, provide recipes on packaging or group items together in stores to show how a meal can come together quickly with a few items, the report suggests.

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