Brits scoff 99 sandwiches, 88 chocolate bars and 67 pasties throughout lunch breaks

A poll, of 1,300 office workers, found 64% will purchase a shop bought lunch at least once per week – with one in five rarely, or never, preparing lunch at home. Consequently, they consume 62 wraps, 61 pasta pots, and even 50 packets of sushi when working from the office.

Over half (53%) find it more convenient, 32% lack the time to prepare a lunch at home – and 22% are too exhausted to cook something for the next day after a shift.

Despite this, 80% claim that having a healthy lunch during their workday is crucial to them, yet 91% of workers don’t always scrutinise the ingredients list on the items they purchase.

Of these, more than four in 10 (43%) are in too much of a hurry to check, and 23% ignore it because it’s not always displayed directly on the packet.

George Taylor, founder and CEO of the meal delivery firm Frive, stated: “With today’s demanding job roles and time constraints, we’ve all been guilty of getting the easy option at lunch.”

“But the reality is many of these on-the-go-products can be packed full of chemicals, artificial ingredients and stuff that the body is just simply not designed to consume – and its compromising our health.”

“We want to inspire busy people to eat well, live better, and thrive by delivering high-quality, chef-prepared meals packed with nutrition while still being incredibly tasty.”

89% love lunches made from fresh and natural ingredients, containing no ultra-processed foods or preservatives.
89% love lunches made from fresh and natural ingredients, containing no ultra-processed foods or preservatives.

It also emerged that 80% of people find it challenging to understand the ingredients in on-the-go lunches. Ingredients such as modified food starch, xanthan gum, potassium chloride, and high fructose corn syrup are commonly found in these meals, leaving workers baffled.

A significant 37% confessed they wouldn’t be able to confidently explain what any of these ingredients are, while 63% admitted uncertainty about their potential health impacts. Furthermore, 32% confessed they rarely or never recognise all the listed ingredients, even when they do check.

However, a whopping 89% of office workers crave simpler options, preferring lunches made from fresh and natural ingredients, free from ultra-processed foods or preservatives.

Despite this, 56% struggle to find a place near their workplace where they can grab a healthy and nutritious lunch. Supermarkets were identified as the most popular retailer for workers to grab a lunch from, with 55% choosing this option.

Nutritionist Sophie Trotman, who is collaborating with Frive – which claims to create meals without artificial preservatives, additives, flavourings, or sweeteners – commented: “It’s clear we’re trying to be healthy, but often the places we buy our lunch don’t make it easy for us. Ingredients lists can be really long, and full of things we don’t recognise – and sometimes they aren’t even displayed at all.”

“Often pre-packaged options are ultra-processed and packed full of preservatives to make them last longer on the shelf. Consuming these additional ingredients on a regular basis can contribute to a whole host of health concerns.”

“Many popular lunch options are also often high in carbohydrates and unhealthy fats while lacking in protein, which is essential for making us feel full. It is essential for meals to be filling, so as to decrease the likelihood of mindless snacking later in the day. Protein is also essential for muscle repair and growth, immune system support and so much more.”