Safe to say we’ve all been spending quite a lot of time at home this year, right? Although 2020 has been a challenge, arguably some positives have emerged from this year. HelloFresh have shared their Table Matters Report after researching if families are having more meaningful mealtime conversations compared to 10 years ago.
HelloFresh have carried out a survey to find out what’s cooking at family mealtimes across the country, if in-fact this increased time at home has meant more than just awkward silences and teenage tantrums at the dinner table. The Table Matters Report reveals how mealtime conversations fare compared to 10 years ago, discovering that exam results and family wellbeing are top of the agenda.
Meaningful Mealtime Conversations
It’s no surprise that the conversation topics cover the global pandemic (54%), mental health (19%) and social injustice (11%) were some of the most popular dinner time conversations in comparison to a decade ago where the royal wedding (22%), Facebook (19%) and even Justin Bieber (12%) were popular talking points. Demonstrating a dramatic shift in consciousness.
The report also states that nearly three quarters (71%) of parents have learnt more about their children thanks to having more time to enjoy mealtimes together. Over a quarter (26%) of families wait for the dinner table to approach meaningful conversations.
“There’s nothing like great conversation over a delicious meal”
The global pandemic has forced us all to slow down, to reassess what matters. A third (32%) of parents say they have had more purposeful conversations with their children because of more frequent meals together and just over a third (36%) agreeing that conversations overall are becoming more meaningful than before.
Increased access to live global information and a deluge of news and social media feeds has led to a more naturally inquisitive younger generation. That’s not to say the younger generation is necessarily more worried and less interested in celebrities and social media, they are perhaps more accepting of previously considered taboo subjects such as mental health and societal issues.
Almost two thirds (65) said that other dinner time topics involved discussing exam results, family wellbeing and the future, whilst life
goals (18%) and social injustice (11%) also high up on the agenda for 4 to 16 year olds. Over a quarter (16%) of parents admitted they feel most comfortable speaking about more meaningful conversations around mealtime.
The report reveals that children also school their parents too, with (81%) of parents admitting they learnt something new on average up to four times per week. One third (37%) now consider the dinner table an extension of the classroom when learning new topics come to mind.
Thanks to lockdown, parents say they have been able to eat together up to 10 times each week, and as a result, half (52%) of parents say they will now consider changing their evening routine once the children go back to school to make more time to continue this new family bonding experience
When asked why they’ll be changing their dinner time routine, (73%) of people said it was because eating together makes them feel closer as a family unit, and over half (52%) said it’s because they have enjoyed the new conversations that they’ve had with the children.
“The dinner table isn’t just for meals. It’s a place to come together”– Laurent Guillemain, UK CEO at HelloFresh
The HelloFresh Table Matters Report has shown that families have re-connected over the past few months enjoying and learning through the art of meaningful mealtime conversations, and that can only be a positive thing, right?