Hospitality Business Magazine

NZ Lamb remains # 1 Christmas dish

Get your ovens ready, the results of the most important vote of the year are in and New Zealand lamb will be the protein of choice on Kiwis’ plates this Christmas Day!

The result comes as part of the Great Kiwi Christmas Survey – the fifth edition of the poll run by Retail Meat New Zealand in conjunction with Beef + Lamb New Zealand and NZPork.

The poll of over 1,000 Kiwis covered everything from what style of Christmas they will be having to when is the appropriate time to begin playing Christmas music. For Christmas dinner, New Zealand lamb was the winner with 38.3% of the vote with ham coming in a close second at 35% and third in line was beef with 13.1%. 

Most kiwis are opting for a traditional style meal with a BBQ as a second preference and 18.5% of respondents said they will be catering for a big crowd.

Beef + Lamb New Zealand CEO, Kit Arkwright says the holiday season is a great time of the year for Kiwis to come together and celebrate with family and friends.

“Food is always an important part of celebrations at this time of the year and it’s no surprise that New Zealand lamb will be the centerpiece for many Kiwis as they celebrate the festive season. 

“It’s a traditional favourite for the Christmas table and is not only delicious but can easily feed a crowd. What’s more, there are some great deals to be had on lamb legs this week, so fill up your fridges and freezers.”

Of those polled 36.8% said they expect to have ten or more people for Christmas Day and 40.2% will spend 2-3 days preparing for their Christmas feast.  58.3% said they will be eating their main Christmas meal between midday and 2pm on Christmas Day with 24% eating after 2pm in the afternoon.

Cooking their Christmas meal in an oven came out top of the poll with the BBQ following closely behind.  61.8% said they expect to have at least 2 days’ worth of leftovers to wade through and of course, Christmas isn’t Christmas without a mouth-watering dessert and once again pavlova took out top spot with 68.5% having this iconic kiwi dessert on their Christmas menu.  Trifle followed by strawberries and ice cream were second and third in line respectively as sweet treats.

Sixty-nine percent of respondents said that spending time with family is their favourite part of the festive season, which is up from 61.6% from last year.  17% said that they are celebrating with more family and friends this year due to Covid restrictions having been lifted with 39.6% saying they will be scaling down their Christmas due to economic pressure.

The question of when to begin playing Christmas music received the highest percentage of votes (79.2%) agreeing that Christmas music should only be played in December.