Most families are settling into routines that a new school year brings. Fall also brings a return to activities and work schedules that can make it difficult to get everyone to sit down to dinner together. Currently, families only prepare and eat half of their dinners at home together, but parents want to eat more meals as a family.
Americans feel that meals made and eaten at home are healthier, more enjoyable and thriftier. Research shows that family meals have both health and social benefits, and work to build strong family ties. So, with the new school year schedule, it’s a great time for families to add more family meal time.
To support more family meals each week, the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) has designated September “Family Meals Month.” The goal of this initiative is to encourage families to prepare and eat one more meal at home each week.
Consumers identified steps that grocery stores could take to help families cook and eat at home together. Dairy processors can also help their customers prepare and eat nutritious meals with their family. Add recipes to your website—especially those that parents and children can cook together. Work with your retailers to implement some of the recommendations in the FMI report, such as displaying meal components together in the store.
The best possible way to celebrate National Family Meals Month however, is by sitting down to dinner with your friends and family. Bon appétit!