Families who eat dinner together more often say they make healthier food choices, survey says

Quebec families are most likely to eat dinner together, while Atlantic Canadian families are least likely

BRAMPTON, ON, Feb. 20, 2013 /CNW/ - TSX:L: Eight-in-ten (82%) Canadian families are sitting down at least four times a week for family dinners. Two-thirds (66%) of these families are also making healthier eating choices reveals a survey* conducted for Loblaw Companies Limited just as the grocer launches its Bring Healthier Home™ campaign on February 22. The survey looks at how often families eat together, when parents teach their children about food and some of the choices Canadians make to eat healthier.

"Getting together for family meals is a habit that we should always encourage," says Alexis Williams, registered dietitian and director, health and wellness at Loblaw Companies Limited. "Mealtime is a great opportunity to familiarize children with cooking and have fun while instilling good eating habits. Encouraging such habits can have a significant impact on our health, which is why it is essential to integrate sensible food choices and nutritional solutions into your lifestyle."

National Highlights

  • The biggest obstacle in getting to the dinner table together is work schedules (68%) followed by demands from children's after school activities (34%).
  • Overall, Canadian families report to be focused on the following areas in an effort to be healthier: eating more fresh foods (40%), reducing sugar intake (31%), reducing fat intake (28%) and reducing sodium intake (23%).
  • Canadian families estimate that about two-thirds (69%) of their total grocery purchases are made up of what they would consider to be healthier eating options.
  • Six-in-ten parents teach kids about nutritious choices while grocery shopping and sixty-three per cent of parents do so while prepping meals.

Survey Results by Province British
  Alberta   Saskatchewan
& Manitoba 
  Ontario   Quebec   Atlantic
What per cent of families eat breakfast together at least four times a week? 26%   26%   24%   27%   39%   27%   29%
What per cent of families eat lunch together at least four times a week? 11%   18%   12%   11%   16%   16%   13%
What per cent of families eat dinner together at least four times a week? 79%   83%   78%   80%   90%   77%   82%
What per cent of people teach their children about healthier eating? 96%   97%   96%   98%   96%   98%   97%
What per cent of people teach their children about healthier eating while grocery shopping? 60%   67%   55%   68%   47%   64%   61%
What per cent of people teach their children about healthier eating while cooking? 64%   69%   58%   62%   64%   65%   63%
What per cent of people teach their children about healthier eating while eating? 84%   90%   90%   85%   82%   81%   85%
Percentage of grocery purchases that are made up of what Canadians consider healthy food options 62%   66%   58%   66%   62%   58%   63%


To help families develop and maintain good habits when preparing meals Loblaw banner stores offer several activities, resources and sensible nutritional solutions in stores and online at pc.ca.

President's Choice® Cooking Schools

Whether for a birthday party, to learn the basics of cooking or to develop one's culinary skills, PC® Cooking Schools offer a range of courses tailored to the needs of adults, teenagers and children. Chefs both young and old are sure to have a lot of fun discovering the tastes, techniques and healthy, nutritious meals offered at the President's Choice® Cooking Schools.

Guiding Stars®

Loblaw banner stores in Ontario (including Loblaws®, Fortinos®, Zehrs Markets®, Your Independent Grocer®, valu-mart® and Real Canadian Superstore®) have introduced a program called Guiding Stars®. The program rates the nutritional quality of the food using a third party impartial rating system and, uses nutritional standards including Canada's Food Guide.  If they meet the appropriate criteria, foods have a rating of 1, 2 or 3 stars with 3 being the highest rating. The program rates foods based on vitamins, minerals, fibre, whole grains, omega-3s, saturated fat, trans fat, added sodium and added sugar.

PC® Blue Menu® products

If you want to fill your grocery cart with healthier products without having to compromise on taste, let PC® Blue Menu® products inspire you—they'll help you eat less fat or sodium in favour of fibre, omega-3 fatty acids or other nutrients.


Do you need tips and advice to improve your health? Simply contact one of our pharmacists to receive information on the in-store dietitian program, for a consultation on blood pressure or to take a screening test for diabetes. Customers can also obtain information on the recommended daily sodium intake and tools to better understand how sodium can affect blood pressure and heart health. In addition to informing patients about personal health care and over-the-counter products, pharmacists can provide a range of services that contribute to their customers' overall well-being.

President's Choice® Children's Charity

The President's Choice® Children's Charity, with the help of customers and colleagues from Loblaw banner stores, is committed to helping kids by providing support to children with special needs and ensuring hungry tummies are filled with nutritious food. The Charity's goal is to make sure kids have every opportunity to live to their full potential. From February 22 to March 7, grocery shoppers are invited to make a $2 donation at the cash register or online at pc.ca/charity. The Charity guarantees that 100% of every dollar donated goes to helping kids.

For product ideas, recipes or tips to improve your diet visit pc.ca or visit your local Loblaw banner store: Loblaws®, Loblaw great food™, Fortinos®, Zehrs Markets®, Zehrs Great Food™, Your Independent Grocer®, valu-mart®, nofrills® and Real Canadian Superstore®.

Survey Method

*Vision Critical conducted an online survey on January 10, 2013 among 1,014 randomly selected Canadians aged 18+ across all provinces who are Angus Reid Forum panelists. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 3.1%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and region Census data to ensure a sample representative of the entire adult population of Canada. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

Vision Critical conducted an online survey from February 11 to February 13, 2013 among 1,500 randomly selected Canadians adults with children under 18 years old in the household and who are Angus Reid Forum panelists. The margin of error—which measures sampling variability—is +/- 2.5%, 19 times out of 20. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current age, gender and region Census data to ensure a representative sample. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding.

About Loblaw Companies Limited TSX:L

Loblaw Companies Limited, a subsidiary of George Weston Limited, is Canada's largest food retailer and a leading provider of drugstore, general merchandise and financial products and services. Loblaw is one of the largest private sector employers in Canada. With more than 1,000 corporate and franchised stores from coast to coast, Loblaw and its franchisees employ more than 135,000 full-time and part-time employees. Through its portfolio of store formats, Loblaw is committed to providing Canadians with a wide, growing and successful range of products and services to meet the everyday household demands of Canadian consumers. Loblaw is known for the quality, innovation and value of its food offering. It offers Canada's strongest control (private) label program, including the unique President's Choice®, no name® and Joe Fresh® brands. In addition, the Company makes available to consumers President's Choice Financial® services and offers the PC® points loyalty program.



SOURCE: Loblaw Companies Limited

For further information:

For further information or to arrange an interview please contact:

Loblaw Companies Limited

Laura Tulley, Hill+Knowlton Strategies
416-413-4635 / laura.tulley@hkstrategies.ca


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