New research has revealed the weekly shop now takes twice as long as it did ten years because Brits have become a nation of health conscious bargain hunters.
Researchers found mums spend one hour and 26 minutes strolling up and down the aisles compared to the 38 minutes it took a decade ago. The added time is spent checking the packaging for health content as well as finding items that are on offer, with one in five people surveyed also tracking how much they spend on their phone as they trawl the shopping aisles.
Bargain hunting has also become more complex, it would seem, with people spending more time working out special offers and weighing up money off deals. Shoppers also spend more time on the aisles because there’s more choice today than there was ten years ago, which has resulted in supermarkets growing in size and thus becoming more arduous to circumnavigate.
Chris deBoer, president of Lending Stream, which commissioned the study, said: “It’s clear that we are now more cautious with our spending and actually proud of our thrifty habits, such as checking for offers, which has to be a good thing, even if food shopping does take a little longer.
“Next to rent or a mortgage, the weekly shop is probably the biggest single outlay for many households so it’s understandable that managing that outgoing is vital for families. No one has a bottomless pool of money anymore and this research shows what an important role the weekly food shop plays in making sure that we live within our budget.”
The study found half of respondents said they have to cater for the needs of different dietary requirements and tastes when doing the family shop, with fussy eaters taking up the most time. Looking back to shopping habits ten years ago the research revealed that shoppers were more concerned about making sure they were in the shop offering the best price for their purchases.They would also calculate everything in their trolley as they went – a tradition which has lasted.
“Sticking to our budget and bargain hunting has become second nature to British shoppers,” deBoer added. “There’s a real satisfaction in getting the best deal and being thrifty with our money.”
5 TOP FIVE REASONS WHY THE FOOD SHOP TAKES LONGER
1. Far more choice than 10 years ago
2. Working out the special offers and BOGOF deals
3. The supermarkets are physically bigger
4. Calculating everything we put in our baskets as we go along
5. Reading labels for nutritional content