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Allegrini 2018

NIELSEN SURVEY: 50% OF ITALIANS SPEND LESS THAN HALF AN HOUR A DAY COOKING, 87% MEN, WHILE WOMEN SPEND 77 MINUTES A DAY IN THE KITCHEN, FIVE MINUTES LESS THAN IN 2010. READY-TO-EAT FOODS AND PREPACKAGED MEALS ARE ALL THE RAGE

Maybe it's time to turn off the television and turn on the stove, because despite the non-stop shows of chefs and amateur cooks on the small screen, Italians are spending less time cooking. The alarm came from the most recent Nielsen survey, which shows 50% of Italians spend less than half an hour a day cooking, which goes up to 87% considering men only, while women spend on average 77 minutes per day in the kitchen, 5 minutes less than in 2010. It’s a small revolution, or rather an involution, which shows a radical change in the shopping cart.

Basic ingredients like milk, flour, butter and eggs, showed 5.3% decline in sales in 2016, compared to growth in ready-made and processed foods, such as salads in a bag and sushi trays, up 5.9% in 2016 and 41.9% since 2007, while tomatoes, which once accounted for 50% of processed products purchased by Italians, are down to 10%.

In the first six months of 2016, sales of snacks and sandwiches grew 27.9% and ready-made soups were up 45.2%, which makes the big supermarket chains happy, because cleaned and bagged salads, for instance, cost 8.67 euros per kilo, at least four times more than whole heads, while sushi costs more than 30 euros per kilo. In addition, as one might imagine, home deliveries of food are growing and now its not just pizzas and Chinese food, but also real, and local, gourmet food.

This trend has come about because of services like Foodora, Deliveroo and now Uber, which are targeting not only the very young, the famous Millennials, but also mothers, because employment of women has continued to grow, and time has become increasingly synonymous with money, including the time spent cooking and cleaning.

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