Thursday, December 8, 2011

What is a family meal today? Send us your definition of a family meal.

One thing we know from US Census information is that 50% of adults over the age of 18 are single.  How do they define a family meal? How often do they have a family meal? We are in search of examples, stories, or case studies on what is a family meal.  How do you “defined” a family meal today?

We think that Grocerant prepared food components, are the foods that binds the family, can be assembled fast, and pleases everyone at the table.

What a quagmire we find ourselves in today trying to understand: what is a family meal? This year while looking for answers from some of the food industry leading research companies I learned that each has a series of benchmark studies all “best in class” yet none seems to answer or categorize: What is a family meal.  Nor did any address what we found, have witnessed or have been hearing about for three years the “new family meal paradigm”.   Here are three examples of that shifting meal paradigm. 
1.  Family dinner occasions with meal components from McDonald's & Taco Time for children 14  & 12 years old's and dinner for adults from Whole Foods prepared meal section.  This is dinner, is it a family meal.  We say yes; since they all eat together just not the same food.

2.  During a recent visit to NYC after a client meeting we went to a business associates home ordered food-in.  His wife, myself and my client we ordered from three separate companies (Italian Chinese, Greek) one was pickup next door.  I was assured this was not unusual in their household, this is a family dinner again.

3. Studies on Take & Bake pizza show it is the sole food item only 60% of the time.  Generally complemented with prepared food from other outlets, the ilk of Wawa, Sheetz, Safeway. Not food prepared from scratch. This again is a family meal.

Please submit your example to  or leave your example below. We think that Grocerant prepared food components, are the foods that binds the family, can be assembled fast, and pleases everyone at the table.

Since 1991 retail food consultancy Foodservice Solutions® of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more Visit:


  1. Me and McDonalds daily for breakfast, a sandwich and coffee sometimes oatmeal. However on Sunday hashbrowns and OJ plus everthing else.

  2. In these economic times, for most people, anything in a can will probably do...until tomorrow.

  3. Snacking all day is a trend driven by millenials... the food & beverage industry sees anywhere from 7 to 10 daily meal occasions.

    So the family meal is also being transformed by social media and mobile technology. Although early on trend, people are starting to share their meal virtually.

    So the family meal will be a point in time during the day, composed of traditional and small bites and possibly across borders and time zones.

    A real challenge to come for the CPG food & beverage sector.