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Survey: More men are manning up at the grocery store

Monday - 10/21/2013, 11:24pm  ET

grocery shopping (AP)

Bringing home the bacon

WTOP's Mike Murillo reports

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Mike Murillo, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - The days of women doing a majority of the shopping for the family are over, according to a new survey.

Forty-seven percent of the men surveyed do at least half of the grocery shopping and food preparation for their household, according to a report by Midan Marketing.

Phil Lempert of SuperMarketGuru.com says it's because many men are at home either by choice or because they have been laid off.

"In fact right now, one-third of all meal planning for the week is being done by the man," Lempert says.

Because of this increasing trend, more retailers and manufacturers are targeting male shoppers. How are they getting the attention of guys? It isn't by using good-looking women to pedal their goods. Lempert says instead, they are focusing on men's health.

"Brands like Hunts with their crushed tomatoes are touting the fact that the Lycopene can help ward off prostate cancer," Lempert says.

A Harvard School of Public Medicine study recently found that men who leave home in the morning on an empty stomach are 20 percent more likely to develop diabetes. So findings like this are resulting in more men eating eggs and egg beaters, Lempert says.

Another sign of the changing times can be seen this Thanksgiving season. Lempert says Butterball Turkey is "actually searching for a male Butterball Turkey hotline receptionist."

Some stores are even providing easy recipes which are geared toward men who might be developing their craft in the kitchen.

"Men also find cooking very relaxing for them after a hard day's work," Lempert says.

Men and women are becoming more equal in all aspects of life as more women climb the corporate ladder, according to Lempert. He adds the Millennial Generation is also changing things as you see both men and women more passionate about food.

But there is a downfall, particularly when men find products well-known to women.

"He brings it home and says, 'Look honey, something new!' And she just shakes her head and says that's not new," Lempert says. And there are also generational lines drawn by men on what he will pick up at the store.

Baby Boomers are least likely to "pick up female-oriented items and female hygiene items," says Lempert. Generation X, Generation Y and Millennials, however, probably won't have as big of a problem picking up anything their special woman needs, he adds.

Happy wife, happy life, right?

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