THE traditional "weekly shop" is a thing of the past, with a new study showing Australian consumers are going through the checkout on average more than 135 times a year - almost three times a week.
The latest consumer research from Project Harvest, which tracks consumer attitudes towards vegetable purchases, shows that 80 per cent of Australians buy vegetables more than once a week, and nearly two thirds of all Australians go grocery shopping more than twice a week.
"With this research showing that only a third of Australians shop once a week, it's time we move on from the idea that Australians rely on one big shop for their weekly groceries," said AUSVEG Assistant Manager - Industry Development, Mr Kurt Hermann.
"While consumers may have a regular 'primary' shopping trip, many shoppers are taking advantage of the fact that major retailers are open late on weekdays, providing them with a convenient option to 'grab and go'."
AUSVEG is the leading horticultural body representing more than 9,000 Australian vegetable and potato growers.
The research shows that the major retailers are the leading grocery shopping destination for consumers, followed by local grocers and independent retailers, with consumers valuing the convenience the major retailers provide.
However, consumers prefer to shop at their local grocer when given the choice, with respondents suggesting that visits to local grocers or market-style retailers have greater sentimental value.
"The data shows that many consumers have two separate types of shopping trips: convenient trips to top up their cupboards, and 'treats' or 'outings' to specialist food retailers," said Mr Hermann.
"For example, nearly 20 per cent of respondents say they buy vegetables at their preferred location because of the people and staff, and another 17 per cent say they visit because of the atmosphere and experience of shopping there."
"Vegetables provide excellent value for money, and it's great to see that Australians are contributing to their long-term health and wellbeing by buying vegetables multiple times a week."
Project Harvest is funded by HIA using the National Vegetable Levy and funds from the Australian Government.