Squeeze on income cuts meat and poultry spend

Pressure on household finances means that many families are spending less on meat and poultry than they did a year ago, according to a recent YouGov report.

Almost a fifth (17%) say they eat less red meat compared to a year ago. Just over one in 10 (11%) say they have less poultry. Of those who are eating less or attempting to cut back, 46% say this is because meat and poultry are now more expensive. A third (33%) say they cannot afford to buy as much meat and poultry as they did a year ago.

Buying and cooking habits have also changed for many. Just less than one in five (19%) say that they now buy more meat and poultry so then can cook from scratch. 17% say they buy cheaper or value cuts and a tenth (10%) say they buy cheaper brands. However, only 4% say they buy more ready-to-cook products and ready meals.

Compared to a year ago, 16% of meat eaters say they have become more experimental with cooking as they look to encompass different cuts and types of meat and poultry, while 13% of adults say they use a wider range of cuts than they used to. The same amount say they try to use recipes which require less meat and poultry or substitute in more vegetables or other ingredients.

Value for money is crucial for those buying meat and poultry, 72% of meat eaters say this is an important consideration. That the food ‘looks good’ is a factor for over almost a third (65%), as was ‘high quality’ (64%) and ‘tastes good’ (59%), highlighting that although many families are cutting back when shopping, they still want to buy a quality product.

Michael Bennett of specialist food PR and communications consultancy Pelican said: “Despite the so called return of the feel-good factor there are still many consumers who are struggling to balance their budget. This is helping drive the on-going success of the discounters as well as a trend to cook more meals from scratch.”

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