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Something's cooking - Brits keen to get back in the kitchen

Published: 1 May 2008
Mintel survey reveals a love affair with good old fashioned home-cooked fare.
Something's cooking - Brits keen to get back in the kitchen
Apparently there are quite a number of Britons who are willing to pay a premium for cookware that allows them to make not just home-cooked fare, but also ethnic meals.

Research from Mintel finds that cooking from scratch is back on the menu and driving Britons into their kitchens to embark upon some culinary experimentation.

It seems that gone are the days of microwave meals as as two in five (41%) surveyed said they always cooked from scratch compared to five years ago when the figure stood at fewer than one in four (24%).

Surprisingly, the microwave is used by only 11% to cook an evening meal.

"It is clear that Brits are keen to get back in the kitchen and rekindle their love affair with good old fashioned home-cooked fare," comments Richard Caines, senior homewares specialist. "One of the main reasons for this is our growing interest in eating more healthily as we move away from pre-prepared meals and look to eat freshly made dishes that are better for you."

Culinary repertoire

Many of us are also expanding our culinary repertoire, as three in ten (29%) adults are always willing to try new and more exciting recipes and one in five (19%) like to create authentic ethnic meals.

By the end of the year, we will have bought 88.5 million new pots, pans and kitchen knives, 6.4m (8%) more than we did in 2003.

Brits will fork out just shy of £0.5 billion (£487m) on the tools of the trade, up 14% in the last five years (2003 - 2008), spending more on cookware than ever before.

"The fact that volume sales have not increased as fast as the amount we spend means that Brits are clearly becoming more sophisticated and opting for premium cookware," explains Mr Caines.

Quality product

Mintel's consumer research also shows that people are increasingly investing in a quality product, with 31% believing that for successful meals, good cookware is essential.

Meanwhile, almost half (47%) believe that it is worth paying more for quality, while only 33% look for special offers and just 18% wait for the sales.

"Not only are Brits looking to cook more, they are also happy to spend more doing it. Innovative designs, the emphasis on quality and better branding are all encouraging a revival in up-market kitchenware, with companies like Professional Cookware and Lakeland selling at higher prices and the Le Creuset range expanding beyond its cast-iron niche," comments Richard Caines.

'Cookware' is available from Mintel, price: £1,500.

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