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Nearly three in 10 Americans plan to include at least one prepared, ready-to-eat dish from a retailer, restaurant or caterer in their Thanksgiving meal this year, according to a recent Technomic survey.
In fact, the proportion of consumers turning to foodservice for part of their Thanksgiving fare has risen over the past three years, from 23 percent in 2011 to 29 percent in 2013.
And as further evidence that consumers are straying from traditional at-home meal prep, 6 percent of those polled in all three years reported that they were planning to share Thanksgiving dinner in a restaurant.
According to Darren Tristano, EVP of Chicago-based Technomic, research shows that “consumers view restaurant meals as a way to connect with family and friends. Using prepared foods for holiday meals at homes has the same effect; it gets hosts out of the kitchen sooner so they can really enjoy time with their guests."