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Wales Online
Wales Online
Neil Shaw

Third of us claim to have picnic ready to go in boot of car at any given time

With summer holidays in full swing, new research has found that picnics have overtaken parties as Brits’ favourite social occasion, with a third of the nation (35%) claiming to pre-prepare ‘quick-nic’ sets so they are always primed and ready to dine outside, with key items like picnic blankets, crockery and cutlery stored inside their car boots.

In the research by Japanese food brand YO!, commissioned to understand how UK dining habits have evolved, half (51%) of Brits rate picnics as their favourite social occasion with nearly three quarters (72%) saying it’s a fantastic way to enjoy the great outdoors and 62% claiming it’s by far the most relaxing way to spend time with family and friends due to being away from the pressures of home. Over half (52%) noted that it’s a more cost-effective way of socialising too.

These views have been echoed by Dr Andy Cope, ‘Doctor of Happiness’, who said: “I’m thinking of trademarking ‘Picnic Power’ because picnics encapsulate so many aspects of happiness; fresh air, family/friends, good food, laughter. After two decades of academic research, I’m beginning to think picnics might be the best kept secret of happiness.”

Knowing that picnics continue to be a key social occasion, YO! has developed its own Picnic Basket Index to look at how our choice of picnic food has evolved – and there’s some surprising movers and shakers.

Whilst sandwiches and crisps continue to reign at number one and two, classic favourites like scotch eggs and pork pies are slipping down the list of popularity. Meanwhile Coronation Chicken has been cited as a picnic item of the past with the great British public now making room for tuna and salmon on their chequered blankets.

Two fifths (40%) of Brits say they are becoming more adventurous with their picnic choices and 70% say that almost any food is picnic permissible – meaning more exotic items are being rolled out in picnic spots across the country.

The Picnic Basket Index has also inspired the creation of YO!’s first sushi picnic bundles, available exclusively at Tesco kiosks. Priced at £12.95, the bundles include a Sushi Platter paired with popping Edamame Beans and sweet Little Moons Chocolate Mochi.

Meanwhile, Brits have also cited their top picnic spots with the Lake District (19%), home to Keswick, Ambleside, Windermere, named as the top location. The Scottish Highlands (11%), New Forest (7%) and Newquay Beach (5%) also came in the top 10.

Victoria Mathers, Head of Marketing at YO! said “It’s interesting to see how Brits are becoming more adventurous with their picnic choices – particularly if that means we’re making tastier, more exotic, and more colourful choices, increasing the amount of fresh food we’re eating Al Fresco. We’re encouraging everyone to Banish the Beige this summer; let’s choose dragon rolls over sausage rolls, gyozas over sarnies, and edamame alongside veg sticks.”

“I have a sneaky feeling that if GPs prescribed ‘picnics’ instead of pills, the world would be a much happier place.” Added Dr Andy Cope.

Add some colour to your picnic this summer with YO! Japanese street food and sushi, available from Tesco YO! Kiosks and for collection from YO! restaurants.

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