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The Great Kiwi Christmas Survey 2023 – Lamb And Ham Go Head-to-head In Festive Face-off

Lamb has claimed victory as the preferred main Christmas Day meat of choice, according to a new survey.

More than a third of respondents (34.29%) to the Retail Meat New Zealand annual Christmas survey opted for this classic Kiwi favourite over ham (33.17%). Beef was ranked in third place at 13.34% and chicken (7.97%) prevailed over turkey (7.75%).

The annual survey, now in its sixth year, captured responses from over 3,000 individuals, providing light-hearted insights into what makes up a Kiwi Christmas.

The survey was promoted via social media channels and electronic newsletters of Retail Meat New Zealand, Beef + Lamb New Zealand and NZPork. Entrants were incentivised to enter, with the opportunity to win one of five Blitzen Meat Boxes.

The Christmas feast extends beyond proteins, with an assortment of side dishes. Potatoes (91.03%) and kumara (55.82%) took out the top spots, while broccoli, carrots, and salads also earned their place on Kiwi tables.

When it comes to dessert, pavlova stole the spotlight, loved by a whopping 70.13% of participants. Trifle, strawberries with ice cream, and fruit salad were also up there in adding a sweet touch to the big day.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand Inc Marketing Manager Katie Ward says the holiday season is a great time of the year for Kiwis to come together and celebrate with family and friends.

"At this festive time, food plays a pivotal role in our celebrations – often being the catalyst to bring us together. A leg of lamb not only offers incredible taste and quality but is also ideal for feeding larger groups. Plus, there are some excellent specials on lamb legs at the moment, so it will pay to shop around for the best deals."

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The survey also looked into the activities accompanying the feast, revealing a mix of traditions, including opening presents (77.47%), backyard games (47.08%), and watching movies (41.65%).

Participants shared their favourite Christmas movies, with ‘Love Actually’ (28.84%), ‘Home Alone’(22.99%), and ‘Die Hard’ (15.82%) featuring as top picks, proving Kiwis have as diverse tastes in entertainment as they do food.

The controversial Christmas (fruit) cake debate has been solved — 82.5% of respondents either love it or think it’s OK, with the minority (17.08%) saying they hate it, less than one percent have never tried it. Christmas cake lives on.

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