9 years ago





A survey of 10,000 adults indicates that, on an average day, 64% of the population of Great Britain do not get their 5-a-day. The study was carried out by YouGov for BBC Good Food, the UK’s leading food media brand. It found that nearly two thirds of people are not heeding the advice of the long running campaign to consume at least five portions per day of fruit and vegetables.  

The survey reveals widespread scepticism about whether 5-a-day is really necessary for optimum health. Overall, people averaged 4 portions of fruit and vegetable a day. Of those who don’t consume 5 portions of fruit and veg a day, the top reasons given were the expense (22%) and simply not caring enough (22%), followed by not believing it was necessary, (20%). Not knowing how to incorporate fruit and veg into their diets was also a factor for 16%. However, health alerts regarding sugar consumption do appear to have made an impact, with 63% perceiving sugar as bad for you.

Other key indications:

  • Young adults get the fewest portions of fruit and veg. Only 21% of 16-24 year olds achieve the 5-a-day target.
  • Of those aged 16-24 who don’t eat at least 5 a day on an average day, the main reason is that they don’t know how to incorporate fruit and vegetables into their diet (32%). 
  • Those with children in their household are less likely to consume at least 5-a-day then those without (26% vs. 32%).
  • Fewer people in Scotland and the North East consume at least 5-a day, (26%), while those in the South East and East Midlands are the most likely to eat at least 5 portions a day (32%.)          

If the prospect of getting your five-a-day is daunting, has the recipes and tips to show just how easy it is to reach this goal; including a handy infographic detailing exactly what constitutes a portion of fruit and veg, plus the health benefits of eating a rainbow diet. There are also details of how to go above and beyond and hit lucky number seven with an expert guide and menus. Readers can also create a personalised healthy eating plan with the Good Food recipe collection – complete with over 40 dishes each containing at least three portions of the good stuff. The website also has two free healthy diet plans to kick off the New Year, including tips and expert advice on how to incorporate healthy eating into your daily diet for the long term. The January issue of BBC Good Food features a pull-out guide to getting your 5-a-day throughout the year.

Gillian Carter, Editor of BBC Good Food, says: “Our survey reveals that many people are failing to achieve their 5-a-day, with a substantial number wondering whether this will have any impact on their overall health. Another concern is that so many younger people say they don’t know how to incorporate fruit and veg into their diet. We want to make it as easy for everyone to eat well and to enjoy their food, so we’re providing new winter recipes, practical tips and advice to inspire you to enjoy fresh, seasonal fruit and veg  – without costing you a fortune. The New Year is the ideal time to make some simple changes that really will make a difference to you and your family’s health.”

The January edition of BBC Good Food magazine is out now and there’s more advice on eating your 5-a-day at


Notes to editors
For more information on the survey please contact Dominic Lobley at Immediate Media on: 0207-150-5015 or email

5-a-day infographic

7-a-day guide and menu:

Recipe collection:

About the survey
BBC Good Food Nation is a survey of eating, drinking and shopping habits in Great Britain to deliver fresh insights, advice and foolproof recipes to make us all better cooks. Started by one of Britain’s biggest food studies of 10,000 British respondents, commissioned by BBC Good Food and conducted by YouGovBBC Good Food will be regularly testing the pulse of all things food related, to uncover trends, regional and demographic differences and also the barriers that prevent people from being proficient, happy cooks.

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 10287 adults in England, Scotland and Wales. Fieldwork was undertaken between 21th – 29th July 2014.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted to represent GB adults (aged 16+).

About BBC Good Food

BBC Good Food has been the cooks’ choice for 25 years. It is the UK’s most popular food media brand with a total brand reach of 10 million people.

Good Food is proud owner of the UK’s market-leading food magazine and digital editions, the UK’s number 1 food website, an expanding number of live events, including the UK’s largest food event – BBCGoodFood Show Live at Birmingham’s N.E.C, and a hugely successful series of cookbooks. Every recipe published by BBC Good Food is triple-tested by the in-house cookery team in the Good Food kitchen. The brand is also the ‘go to’ destination on everything to do with food – from cooking inspiration, practical help, learning new skills and expert reviews, plus food-related travel, local and seasonal food knowledge, and cooking with children.

Back to the latest news