Over the years, consumers have changed how they acquire food. Foods purchased away-from-home have increased over purchasing food to eat at home. The USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) studies all food purchases to get a broad picture of consumer buying habits.
The ERS study looked beyond eating at restaurants to include sources such as airline food, hospital and nursing home food, and prison food. They also looked at food purchased through assistance programs such as food and nutrition assistance programs, meals at work locations, and meals served at government-sponsored locations. In the last two decades, shoppers have increased food expenditures from warehouse club stores and supercenters instead of traditional grocery stores.
Away from home, food purchases are increasing at fast food restaurants while full-service restaurants have remained steady.
The complete report can be found at https://bit.ly/2Fu6Tb4.