Fruit and vegetables not prominent on the Latvian menu

Take note – story published 2 years ago

The image of Latvia as a farming nation that just loves to consume regular, large portions of fresh fruit and vegetables is belied by latest data from Eurostat.

In 2019, 1 in 3 people (33%) in the EU reported not consuming any fruit or vegetables daily and only 12% of the population consumed the recommended 5 portions or more daily. On average, over half of the EU population (55%) said they ate between 1 and 4 portions of fruit and vegetables daily.

Latvia was among the worst-rated countries in this respect. 39% of people ate 1 to 4 portions of fruit and veg daily and only 7% of the population consumed 5 portions or more, leaving the majority of the population – 54% – not eating fruit and vegetables on a daily basis.

EU fruit and vegetable consumption 2019
EU fruit and vegetable consumption 2019

Among the EU Member States, the highest daily intake of 5 portions or more was reported in Ireland (33% of the population), the Netherlands (30%), Denmark (23%) and France (20%).

A few other countries were even more averse to healthy food than Latvia. The lowest daily intake was found in Romania, where only 2% of the population ate at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables, followed by Bulgaria and Slovenia (both 5%) and Austria (6%).

Across the EU Women display considerably more nutritional nous than men, according to the data. On average, 58% of women reported eating 1 to 4 portions compared to 51% for men. The same was true for a daily intake of 5 portions or more (15% vs 10%).

The survey also showed that more men than women reported skipping their fruit and vegetable intake altogether (39% vs 27%).

Latvia's figures reveal 43% of women have 1 to 4 portions of fruit and veg per day and nearly 9% have 5 portions or more. For men the equivaent figures are 34% and 5.4%, leaving around 60% of Latvian men with nary a nice juicy apple nor a crunchy carrot on their plates each day.

EU fruit and vegetable consumption, 2019
EU fruit and vegetable consumption, 2019

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