Nutrition Report 2018 of the BMEL

72 percent of Germans will eat fruit and vegetables every day

43 percent of people in Germany regularly eat out. This is one of the conclusions of the Nutrition Report 2018 commissioned by the BMEL on German food habits, desires and trends.

Accordingly, almost a quarter of Germans are buying snacks like sandwiches at least once a week, one fifth eats out once or several times a week. 74 percent of respondents said they visit a restaurant at least once a month.

"We must ensure that even more places hold the quality standards for public catering of the German Nutrition Society," said Federal Nutrition Minister Christian Schmidt at the presentation of the third BMEL Nutrition Report "Deutschland, wie es isst", in Berlin.

Nutritional education in the schools
Nine out of ten Germans (91 percent) regard nutritional education at school as just as important as subjects like mathematics, German or English. This vision is held, regardless whether there are children in their households. "Nutritional education should be firmly rooted in the curriculum - preferably as a separate subject," said Schmidt. According to the findings of the Nutrition Report, corresponding educational plans for students were well received.

More transparency about food
Consumers are interested in the origin, production and composition of their food. Many people are really looking at the information that is available to them and incorporate all this into their purchasing decisions.

And not only the packaging is important. About two-thirds of respondents are using the information that is available at the point of purchase. More and more people are also getting digital information: 42 percent claim to be informed about food via online research, 21 percent visit Internet forums with product reviews, 14 percent find out about things on social media. The latter are predominantly used by the younger generation: 31 percent of under-30s use social media, compared with 4 percent of those over 60.

Against this background, transparent information is important. "People want clear and neutral information. Last year, together with the Federal Center for Nutrition, I created a central facility for science-based nutritional communication suitable for everyday use," said Schmidt.

What's on the table every day?
Fruit and vegetables are not only healthy, they are also eaten willingly. Nearly three-quarters of respondents (72%) say they consume fruit and vegetables every day. In addition, dairy products such as cheese, yoghurt and quark are becoming increasingly popular - two out of three people in Germany (65%) have these on the menu daily. This is also reflected in the beverages: 40 percent drink fresh milk, buttermilk or whey every day. Meat and sausages are served by almost one third of consumers (30%) every day. 14 percent of people claim to take daily supplements such as vitamins, minerals or fibers.

In Germany, thirst quencher number one is water: 91 percent drink it every day. Also very popular are classic hot drinks - 84 out of every 100 people treat themselves to a steaming cup of coffee or tea every day. Soft drinks such as coke or sodas and juices are consumed every day by 24 percent of Germans.

Consumers take responsibility
The BMEL initiative against food waste (‘Too good for the bin!’) has made people more aware of the value of food. 86 percent of consumers surveyed consider themselves responsible for reducing food waste. 63 percent are already buying more consciously. And more than half say they want to make better use of food leftovers to avoid waste. "My goal is to halve food waste by 2030. With our successful initiative, we are on the right track."

Read the full Nutrition Report 2018 here.

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