Food preparation skills among young adults are associated with healthy food choices, better diets and a greater likelihood of an independent, healthy adult life. This study conducted in Hong Kong aimed to investigate parents' perceptions of cooking skills; to explore the transference of cooking skills in the home setting; to identify parents' expectations regarding the transference of cooking skills; and to inform the development of educational initiatives for developing healthy eating habits. A questionnaire survey was conducted to collect information of the subjects' cooking experience, attitudes about cooking skills, cooking habits at home, family meal habits, transference of cooking culture in the family and the factors influencing the choice of ingredients and cooking. It was administered to 1009 Hong Kong parents (of students aged between 11 and 18, studying in 15 secondary schools). The collected data were analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (version 12.0, SPSS, Inc., Chicago, IL, USA) and cross-tabulation analyses were used to compare the responses of the parents by gender, employment status and income. The results show that parents valued cooking as important life skills for both boys and girls. Parents generally perceived their cooking skills either good (41.9%) or mediocre (54.5%), yet children are rarely taught these skills in the home. Family meals prepared primarily with fresh ingredients are still an important part of the daily routine, and mothers are dominating the roles in food choice decision, cooking and buying the ingredients for family meals. Mothers and schools are expected to be the major channel to teach children cooking skills. Findings suggest that parents are well-disposed towards providing food and nutrition education at home, but need more support (50% reported that home should be a primary support for learning cooking skills; 36% indicated that the school should have a responsibility to teach children to cook starting in elementary school). Schools may do well to collaborate with families in food literacy education initiatives. Developing individuals' cooking skills paves the way for long-term health benefits and the well-being of the local population. Copyright © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
|Journal||International Journal of Consumer Studies|
|Early online date||Jan 2015|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2015|
CitationLai-Yeung, T. W. L. (2015). Hong Kong parents' perceptions of the transference of food preparation skills. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 39(2), 117-124.
- Healthy food choice
- Food literacy
- Food preparation skills
- Life skill
- Nutrition education
- Parents perception