New research from reservations platform, OpenTable, shows that the majority of Australians don’t understand what sustainable dining is.
The 2017 Sustainable Dining research was commissioned by OpenTable and conducted by Galaxy Research in March 2017. A sample size of 1,014 respondents was surveyed across Australia, including both capital city and non-capital city areas.
The research found that 81 percent of Australians believe it’s important that the food they eat when dining out is ethically-sourced. However less than half (44 percent) can articulate what sustainable dining means.
Lisa Hasen, VP of OpenTable, APAC, said “Whether ordering from a restaurant menu or buying groceries at the market, Australians have become increasingly conscious of the food they eat and where it comes from. Factors such as food miles and animal cruelty matter to them, and as a result we are seeing a strong shift within the restaurant industry, with diners gravitating towards venues that engage in sustainable practices. It’s rewarding to see this love of seasonal, eco-friendly food come alive in restaurants on our platform such as acre at Camperdown Commons, The Grounds of Alexandra and Bouche on Bridge, where sustainability is integral to their ethos.”
Young Australians are embracing strongly, with 76 percent of those aged between 18 and 24 years old stating that sustainable and ethically-sourced foods are important to their overall dining experience. Further to this, 39 percent of Gen Y admitted to cutting their meat intake in the past few years.
Females are driving the sustainable dining trends, and are more likely than men to understand the meaning of the term (49 percent vs. 39 percent). They’re also more likely to say it’s important to them that that the food they eat when dining out is sourced ethically (85 percent vs. 77 percent). Women are more likely to say they’ve reduced their meat consumption over the past few years (51 percent vs. 37 percent).
Forty-three percent of Australians list the preservation of natural resources as the main reason why they prefer sustainably-sourced food, followed by the ability to reduce and avoid the impact of animal cruelty (42 percent).
When choosing a restaurant to dine at, the use of in-season produce from local suppliers had the greatest pulling power, appealing to more than half (56 percent) of diners. Other factors that resonate and influence restaurant choice include:
- The practice of giving surplus food to charities (49 percent);
- Taking active measures to use sustainably-sourced ingredients (40 percent);
- Growing their own produce on-site (31 percent).
Summary of key findings from OpenTable’s 2017 Sustainable Dining Report
- Four in five (81 percent) of respondents said it’s important that the food they eat when dining out is sourced ethically
- When asked about the meaning of ‘sustainable dining’, less than half of Australians (44 percent) provided a correct answer, while 14 percent provided an incorrect answer and 42 percent admitted they didn’t know what it meant
- Forty-four percent of Australians said they have reduced their meat consumption in recent years
- Women are more likely than men to understand the meaning of the term ‘sustainable dining’ (49 percent vs. 39 percent)
- Women are more likely than men to say it is important to them that that the food they eat when dining out is sourced ethically (85 percent vs. 77 percent)
- Women are more likely than men to say they have reduced the amount of meat they are eating over the past few years (51 percent vs. 37 percent)
- South Australians are leading the way in terms of less meat consumption with nearly half of those living in SA (49 percent) having reduced their meat intake, followed by WA and VIC/TAS (both 45 percent)
- Those living in capital cities are more likely to reduce their meat consumption with 47 percent of city-dwellers reducing their meat intake in the last few years, while only 37 percent have in regional areas