BIRMINGHAM, ALA. - A survey of approximately 3,000 consumers conducted on March 23 by eMeals identified that shoppers have increased weekly grocery spending, are cooking dinner at home more often and utilizing online grocery tools as a result of coronavirus (COVID-19). 

Grocery spending for the week of March 18-23 was up 55% over survey respondent’s typical weekly purchases. Approximately 13% said they spent $400 or more and only 1% said their bill was normally that high. 

Rather than going to the grocery store, 34% of survey respondents are using online grocery pickup or delivery services. More than half utilized Walmart’s services, with Kroger and Instacart ranking second and third, respectively. 

Before the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak, consumers were cooking on average 3.8 weekly dinners at homes. eMeals found that now shoppers are cooking an average of six nights week, with 57% reportedly trying to make simple meals with basic ingredients they already had in their pantries and freezers. 

"Shopping and cooking habits have clearly been impacted by the coronavirus outbreak,” said Forrest Collier, chief executive officer of eMeals. “Short supplies at grocery stores, restaurant closings, and the need to reduce the number of shopping trips to limit exposure are changing behavior, including prompting more consumers to use online grocery services for curbside pickup or home delivery."