Indian food has become too much popular in the United Kingdom over the past decade and a large number of Britons now prefer to eat out at Asian resturants, according to a study.
Sales of not only Indian but also other Asian dishes like Chinese and Thai have increased 36 per cent between 2001 and 2006 -- overall the fast food industry has increased its sales by 73 per cent between 1995 and 2005, the study says.
"Food is now a key part of our leisure time and we are eating out more often. It is no longer unfashionable to cook but this trend can be at odds with desires for convenience or intentions to make ethical or healthy choices.
"The popularity of convenience food snacking and eating out have led to concerns about the demise of the family meal as well as a decline in knowledge and skills about food (but) the majority of family meals are still eaten together.
"Even in single person households, eating remains a social activity with young single people tending to invite people to dinner more often than their married counterparts," 'The Guardian' quoted the government study of British eating habits as saying.
However, it has played down reports that Britain is not only becoming a nation of scoffers but also getting dangerously dependent on food from abroad.
According to the study, Britain now imports 40 per cent of the country's food, significantly more than 10 years ago when the European Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) rewarded farmers for production.
"But we used to import far more between 1870 and 1939. The very high self-sufficiency of the 1980s and 1990s was unusual -- an artifact of the CAP. Europe is expected to provide most of our future imports for the foreseeable future," the study says.