Over five years from July 2009 and June 2014, the proportion of Australians who have said they eat sushi has grown from 36% to 40%. However, over the same period, the number of spring rolls eaters has declined a little, from 37% to 35%.
Fried food flops
A similar downward trend can be seen with other fried foods such as dim sum, Chiko Rolls and french fries.
Sushi rolls are more popular among women (43%) than men (37%), while the opposite is true of spring rolls, enjoyed by 37% of men and 34% of women.
Australians aged under 50 are more likely than their older counterparts to enjoy both products, with 18-24 year-olds showing the most enthusiasm for sushi (52%) and under-18s being the biggest spring roll fans (50%). In both cases, Aussies aged over 65 are the least likely to enjoy these foods.
The main differences between fans of sushi and spring rolls emerge when their attitudes to food are compared, with the former being noticeably more concerned with their health and weight.
Health trumps fattening foods
For example, sushi eaters are more likely than those who like spring rolls to prefer healthy snacks, avoid over consuming fattening foods and be bordering on the vegetarian.
In contrast, spring-roll lovers are more likely to buy takeaway food, favour taste over ingredients and buy frozen or chilled ready meals
"There’s no doubt that Australia is the land of the rising sushi, with new sushi outlets springing up quicker than sushi fans can get to them. And if this popularity continues to grow, we’ll no doubt see more of them,” said Angela Smith of Roy Morgan Research.
“Of course, many of us like both sushi and spring rolls, depending on what’s available and whether we’re in the mood for fresh or fried food. But the fact that more of us are developing a taste for sushi while fewer are enjoying spring rolls and other fried food suggests that our appetite for fresh is winning out.”