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Kiwis eating more tinned food? Food body chief doesn't think so

By Ankush Chibber , 25-Nov-2011

A survey of supermarkets in New Zealand has found that consumers are eating more tinned food as the cost of fresh fruit and vegetables continues to rise.

The poll was conducted by New Zealand-based research Canstar Blue, which commissioned Colmar Brunton Australia to survey 2,500 New Zealand shoppers to measure their satisfaction across a range of products and services.

The survey indicated that 30% of participants claim they have increased the amount of tinned food they buy.

Shoppers in Auckland, Christchurch and Dunedin are the most likely to have increased the amount of canned food they buy, to counter the rising cost of purchasing fresh goods, found the research.

But Katherine Rich, chief executive of the New Zealand Food and Grocery Council (NZFGC) told FoodNavigator-Asia that the findings were difficult to evaluate given the fact that fruit and vegetable prices have actually come down recently.

“Fruit and vegetable prices have fallen in the last couple of months. There has also been an influx of imported bargain tinned goods retailing as low as 99 cents a tin so that would also drive sales,” she said.

Rich said that while cost may be a factor, she still doubts that it is the price of fresh fruit and vegetables that has driven shoppers to purchasing tinned versions.

“Kiwi consumers tend to substitute frozen for fresh, rather than tinned. Tinned products are often used for different use situations,” she said.

“For example, tinned tomatoes are great for Italian meals, but lousy as part of a green salad. It would be the same for tinned asparagus, corn, and peas. The tinned product is used differently by New Zealand cooks as are tinned fruits,” she said.

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