- About 43% of American men are cooking these days, the highest percentage in the past three decades, according to a study based on the Bureau of Labor Statistics' American Time Use Survey.
- At the same time, the percentage of women who cook inched up to 70% from 67% two decades ago, but that is still well below the 88% of women who were cooking as of 40 years ago.
- These cooking trends could be driven by stagnant wages that encourage people to cook more at home than spend money to eat out. Widespread internet About access and social media usage also may encourage home cooks to try out fun and healthy recipes.
Women had been the primary home cooks and household grocery shoppers for decades, but men are increasingly assuming these roles. Another report last year found that men made up 43% of primary household shoppers and made the same number of monthly store visits as women, though where and how they shopped often differed.
This could influence the way food and beverage manufacturers market their products to consumers. Ads may start showing men pushing shopping carts in grocery stores rather than women, or a father or husband cooking a meal in the kitchen rather than a mother or wife.
This trend could also impact product development, as surveys have shown that certain products, flavors and textures may resonate more with men than women.
Another option is that food and beverage product development and marketing campaigns become more gender neutral altogether. An ad might depict a couple or entire family cooking together in the kitchen or enjoying the product at a sports game or outdoor event. Manufacturers may target product characteristics, flavors and ingredients that resonate across the board rather than with any one particular gender.
Certain product categories may have more work to do than others to capture the male demographic. Beer and whiskey, for example, are already heavily skewed toward the male market, and have actually made moves to appeal to more women drinkers. Other products may have more strategizing to do to entice male grocery shoppers.