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Belgians snub the kitchen as takeout popularity soars

More and more Belgians are opting to eat out rather than cook their own meals, a study shows. Credit: Unsplash

The food-delivery and takeout businesses are booming in Belgium, as an increasing number of people in the country prefer eating ready-made meals over homemade dishes.

A significant part of the food-related expenses made by Belgians last year was used to buy prepared meals, a new food consumption study by food-industry representative Comeos showed.

In 2018, Belgians spent around €25.2 million in “convenience” food-products, which the study says includes frozen meals, sandwiches, salads and pre-packed cooked dishes, as well as restaurant takeout.

The number accounts for 70% of all food-related expenses made by Belgians that year, which totalled €34.5 million.

“It is hard to say whether the offer is responding an existing demand, or whether it is creating it,” Comeos representative Dominique Michel said.

As the food-service industry in Belgium expands and diversifies, an increasing number of restaurants and service industry professionals are opting to partner up with food-delivery startups, giving a boost to entrepreneurship in the sector.

The main consumer base of takeout and delivery services is single, urban, and under 60, the study indicates.

The Brussels Times