Enjoy a hassle-free holiday dinner
Dec. 6, 2002
KALAMAZOO -- Forget the hazards of runny mashed potatoes or scorched turkey. Never mind the blood sweat and tears once shed in the kitchen on Christmas day. Today's consumer can order up a complete turkey, ham or vegetarian dinner from a local grocery store and forget the holiday feast hassle factor.
"This trend is part of the growing prepared foods market in the grocery industry," says Dr. Ron Larson, assistant professor in Western Michigan University's food marketing program. "There are several different systems: you can pick up a hot, fully cooked meal, a fully cooked chilled meal that just needs to be reheated or a partially cooked meal that you take home and finish off in your own oven."
Larson says grocery stores are trying to recoup some of the business lost to the restaurant industry over the holidays. He notes that it can be profitable for stores that require customers to put down a deposit or pay in advance, which eliminates much of the risk and waste.
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