Butter rebounds among grocery shoppers as margarine mellows

Butter has overtaken margarine as the spread of choice among Australian grocery shoppers, data from Roy Morgan Research shows.

More than half of Grocery Buyers 14+ (51%) bought butter in an average four-week period last year (up 6% points since 2010) while less than half (49%) bought Margarine (down 9% points).

The spreadable edibles are following converse paths in popularity, with butter-buying up and margarine down every year since 2010. Holding comparatively steady are the hybrid dairy spreads/butter blends, now bought by 29% of grocery buyers in an average four weeks, just slightly below the five-year average of 30%. (Source: Roy Morgan Single Source, January 2010?ecember 2014, average annual sample n = 13,243 Grocery Buyers 14+).

Butter-buyers are more likely than margarine-buyers to enjoy cooking (and to be complimented on it), more likely to enjoy entertaining spontaneously and trying new and exotic foods, more likely to try to buy additive-free, organic and non-GM food (Healthiness is a goal  but not at the expense of taste), and are more likely than marge-buyers to trust well-known brands more than stores’ own, Roy Morgan said.

Those who bought margarine in the last four weeks are less epicurean than their butter-loving brethren. They are more likely to prefer to clean than cook, to buy frozen or chilled ready-made meals, and to be concerned about their cholesterol levels and weight and more likely to buy the same food every week and have traditional meals at home.

Like butter-buyers, they appreciate taste but for them, it’s about the end result, not the ingredients. They are more likely than butter-buyers to buy more stores’ own products than well-known brands.

Angela Smith, Group Account Director ?Roy Morgan Research, says: ?broader trends over the last few years may be influencing the changing habits of grocery buyers choosing between butter and margarine. Australians are becoming more health-conscious and aware of fat content, more concerned by additives and genetic modification, and more interested in cooking and entertaining.

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