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Majority of dads say they do the grocery shopping

Brian Snyder / Reuters file

According to a survey, 52 percent of dads say they are the primary supermarket shoppers in the household.

There’s a good chance dad might be shopping for his own Father’s Day breakfast in bed this Sunday. No, he’s not in the doghouse, but apparently dads are doing more of the grocery shopping these days.

According to a survey released this week by brand marketing firm Cone Communications, 52 percent of dads say they are the primary supermarket shoppers in the household, and 35 percent of moms admitted fathers have more influence when it comes to grocery purchases. 

“This research goes against all stereotypes of the ‘Father Knows Best’ dad who doesn’t concern himself with domestic responsibilities,” says Bill Fleishman, president of Cone Communications, about the online survey that polled 1,000 parents with children under 17.

The company’s research also found dad shoppers aren’t just winging their supermarket hunting. Dad’s polled said they:

  • Create a detailed shopping list – 63% (vs. 65% of moms)
  • Collect coupons or read circulars – 56% (vs. 62% of moms)
  • Plan meals for the week ahead of time – 52% (vs. 46% of moms)
  • Perform background research on grocery products – 24% (vs. 11% of moms)

And moms are more likely to spend more time in the grocery store than dads. While Cone’s study found fathers were doing more of the grocery shopping, Today Money Facebook fans we informally polled Friday largely said the opposite it true.

“If my husband went to the store we would be having frozen pizza and macaroni and cheese for dinner every night,” said Mariska Colbert of her husband Zac.

And Melissa Klement added, “Wish my hubby would do it.”

But Roberta Harwood Speller, who works in a grocery store said: “There are several men that shop each week there for their families. They do very well. Even have their kids with them.”

For those of us who just can’t accept father foragers in the supermarket, it may be time set aside your bias in the aisle.

“We’re finding that dads are not acting so differently from moms in their approach to grocery shopping,” maintained Cone’s Fleishman.

(Full disclosure: My husband does most of the supermarket shopping these days, but I have to write up the list.)

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