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It would appear that the Dutch are a little less adventurous in the kitchen than they might think. According to a 2009 study, commissioned by the FNLI (Dutch Food Industry Federation), many actually prefer a traditional Dutch stampot (staple Dutch dish with mash and vegetables) to authentic Italian pasta or a fragrant Asian wok dish.
The FNLI are responsible for the ‘Dagelijkse Voedingsrichtlijn’ – information found on the packaging of Dutch food products. The labelling indicates both the product’s nutritional value and the percentage of the recommended daily allowance that it contains, in order that consumers can make an informed choice in the supermarket. In their survey, the FNLI examined the day-to-day eating habits of Dutch people aged between 18 and 64. Somewhat surprisingly and despite the widespread availability of exotic foods from all over the world, 86% of all respondents still favour typical Dutch meals!
The respondents were also asked which Dutch meals they enjoy most, revealing the following top 3 Dutch dishes:
Another interesting detail to emerge from the study was that older respondents tend to be far more aware of what they are purchasing. So, whilst Dutch adults up to 34 years of age barely glance at the Dagelijkse Voedingsrichtlijn, 46% of those over the age of 50 regularly devour the information provided on the product packaging, before adding it to their supermarket trolley. And despite the lack of foreign influence in the top 3 favourite meals, the Dutch certainly don’t consider themselves boring or conservative when it comes to their eating habits. In fact, the overwhelming majority of all respondents believe that the Netherlands boasts a genuine and treasured food culture all of its own.