More than half of American shoppers buy food as a Christmas gift, but supermarkets not first choice

Posted by Isobel Drake on 10th December 2008

‘Tis the season of food, giving and eating it, according to a report by The NPD Group, a leading market research company. According to the Christmas Holiday Profile Report, 52 per cent of consumers who report giving gifts at Christmas, give food. Discount stores represent the leading place to purchase food for gifts, with supermarkets/grocers the second most popular choice.

The report finds that half of the food given as Christmas gifts is candy, mostly chocolate candy. Cookies/biscuits are also a popular Christmas gift, with 42% indicating they give cookies. An assortment of other foods such as meat, breads, fruits, jams, and seafood are given by 23 per cent of the respondents. Sixty-three per cent report that the food they gift has a holiday theme or package.

In terms of eating certain foods at Christmas, cookies/biscuits represent the number one snack food traditionally eaten at Christmas – with 65 per cent admitting they did so. Forty-nine per cent reported vegetables as a top snack eaten more often during the holiday season, 48 per cent eat chocolate candy, 46 per cent eat nuts, 44 per cent eat cheese, and 37 per cent eat fresh fruit. Eleven per cent of the respondents admit to consuming fruit cake.

Food is even involved in Christmas decorating – 15% of respondents who decorate at Christmas said they use candy for holiday decorating.