April 02, 2012 at 09:42 AM EDT
Is the U.S. Cook Aware? New Research Details Consumers' Changing Cooking, Eating and Food Purchasing Behaviors

DuPont™ Teflon® Brand Team Releases National Survey Results at an International Culinary Expo, Hosting Expert Panel to Reveal Research Highlights

WILMINGTON, Del., April 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. consumers are cooking more often, experimenting with food and using time in their kitchen to help save money and eat healthier. These findings are among the results of the March 2012 DuPont™ Teflon® brand Be Cook Aware consumer survey, conducted to understand how the past year's trends have impacted America's cooking and eating behaviors at home. 

"Societal and economic shifts such as the fluctuating economy, combined with evolving national demographics and the introduction of new nutritional guidelines, are likely to have heightened people's awareness of the need to evolve eating and cooking behavior," said Christa Kaiser, global business segment manager, Teflon® nonstick coatings systems.  "Consumers are living smarter and healthier, and having more fun in the process."

Compared to this time last year, for example, approximately three-quarters of consumers (72 percent) indicated ways in which they have changed how they cook and eat in their home.  More than one-third of consumers (37 percent) reported they are cooking more often, and more than one-fourth (26 percent) are experimenting more with food.  Others (23 percent) are eating more natural or organic foods and 19 percent are eating more frozen foods. 

Again, compared to the year prior, nine in 10 (89 percent) of consumers are paying more attention to certain factors when purchasing food for their home.  Seventy-three percent named price as a factor they consider more frequently, followed by ingredients (48 percent) and nutritional information (46 percent).  When it comes to food choices, fresh ingredients (52 percent) are at the top of the list of what's important to consumers, followed by foods with less fat (49 percent), less sugar (44 percent), less salt (44 percent) and more nutrients (41 percent).

When it comes to food purchases, 50 percent of respondents reported they are taking advantage of in-store sales and 45 percent report buying only what they need, more often. Forty-three percent are increasing their use of coupons, 35 percent are buying fresh ingredients more often and 25 percent are participating in store loyalty programs, among others.  When asked which behaviors they are more likely to engage in over the next year, the number one answer was 'eat leftovers' (42 percent), followed by 'recycle' (36 percent), 'cook smaller portions' (30 percent), 'buy local foods' (23 percent), 'wash dishes by hand' (21 percent) and 'buy cheaper ingredients' (20 percent).

The DuPont™ Teflon® brand Be Cook Aware survey also indicates that increased attention to health and price are not limiting consumers' imagination and enjoyment in the kitchen.  Over the past year, consumers name using new recipes (47 percent), eating with friends and family (30 percent), using different cooking techniques such as fondue and grilling (19 percent) and experimenting with international cuisines (14 percent) as ways they are making cooking and eating in their homes more fun.  The majority of consumers are using new or shared recipes to inspire their cooking (59 percent using online recipes, cookbooks, recipes from family, friends, cooking shows and apps). 

Consumers' biggest challenge in the kitchen, not surprisingly, is cleaning up after cooking (40 percent), followed by preparation time (26 percent) and making foods that everyone likes to eat (24 percent).  The most commonly used cookware is nonstick (66 percent), followed by stainless steel (48 percent) and cast iron (23 percent).

"The Teflon® brand team is looking at the factors impacting decision making and we are using our experience to help empower cooks to bring out the best in themselves and their cooking," said Kaiser.  Online advice, recipes and more are available at www.teflon.com/aware.

The DuPont™ Teflon® brand Be Cook Aware survey was conducted by TNS, an independent research agency. The data were gathered from March 7 to March 11, 2012, among a national sample of 1,000 American adults ages 18 and older.  Results were released by the Teflon® brand team at a roundtable discussion during the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) Culinary Expo on April 1, 2012 in New York City.  The Teflon® brand team, the nonstick category originator, invited several food and lifestyle celebrities to help introduce the findings, and to discuss solutions for consumers seeking advice for adapting to new ways of cooking and eating.

The roundtable at the IACP event was moderated by Kelsey Nixon, host of Kelsey's Essentials on the Cooking Channel. Panelists included Janice Newell Bissex, M.S., R.D., author of the new family cookbook, No Whine with Dinner, and co-Founder of MealMakeoverMoms.com; Dr. Rovenia Brock, author and nutrition coach to the Dr. Oz Show; Joscelyn Ramos Campbell, editor-in-chief of MamiOfMultiples, one of the nation's leading Hispanic American Mom blogs; Lauren Braun Costello, renowned food stylist and host of AOL's hit cooking series Pantry Challenge; and Dr. Kantha Shelke, food scientist, editor-at-large for Penton Media's Functional Ingredients and advisory board member for Nutrition Business Journal.

The origin of the DuPont™ Teflon® brand began with the discovery of polytetrafluoroethylene, (PTFE), in 1938 by DuPont chemist Roy Plunkett. Teflon® nonstick coating systems were first commercialized for cookware more than 50 years ago in the United States. Cookware made with Teflon® nonstick coating systems makes cooking and clean up easier. DuPont has created a wide range of nonstick coating systems for cookware to meet the needs of a variety of end users – from those who are avid cooks to those who are professional chefs. For more information, please visit www.teflon.com.

DuPont (NYSE: DD) has been bringing world-class science and engineering to the global marketplace in the form of innovative products, materials, and services since 1802.  The company believes that by collaborating with customers, governments, NGOs, and thought leaders we can help find solutions to such global challenges as providing enough healthy food for people everywhere, decreasing dependence on fossil fuels, and protecting life and the environment.  For additional information about DuPont and its commitment to inclusive innovation, please visit http://www.dupont.com.

The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont™, The miracles of science™ and Teflon® are registered trademarks or trademarks of DuPont or its affiliates.

SOURCE DuPont

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