The surprising cost of Scotland’s takeaway meals

Over a third of adults in Scotland are ordering takeaways every week, adding up to over £1.5bn a year, with the biggest spenders shelling out over £1,200 a year on their orders.

34% of adults are placing the orders, according to a survey conducted for Quality Meat Scotland, based on the research revealing a 2% spend over £100 on average per month on takeaways.

Chinese was revealed as Scotland’s most popular takeaway (44%), followed by Indian (21%), Italian (12%) and a chippy (8%), according to research carried out by Censuswide on behalf of Specially Selected Pork.

However, our love of takeaways could be having an underlying impact on our health – more so than we think. When asked how much calories they estimate to be in their favourite takeaway order, the average response was 1,026.

When compared to the amount of calories in an average Chinese takeaway of sweet and sour chicken, vegetable spring rolls and fried rice, the results are vastly different, with calories hitting 2,184 (Safefood).

On the back of this, Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) wants to highlight the healthier options available to us as part of its Go Places with Pork campaign, which is encouraging people to swap takeaways for ‘fakeaway’ options by sharing a range of convenient, low-fat alternatives inspired by world cuisine and using Specially Selected Pork from Scotland.

With eating habits changing and young people aged 16 to 34 are significantly more likely to order up to six takeaways a week than those over 35, the campaign also hopes to inspire younger generations with recipes tailor-made to suit busy lifestyles.

Kirsty Fox, marketing manager from QMS hopes the healthier options will satisfy cravings without compromising on flavour

She said: ‘With takeaway orders on the up, we’re encouraging consumers to instead consider alternatives that are healthier, quick and easy to make and more affordable.

‘We’ve created delicious dupes of the nation’s favourites, including sweet and sour, Chinese noodles, tikka and souvlaki, each made using Specially Selected Pork, which is sourced from trusted Scottish farms which are approved by the Scottish SPCA.

‘The research showed that people are ordering an average of four takeaways a month, spending over a day (25 hours) a year waiting for them to arrive. With this in mind, our recipes can be prepared and cooked in half the time it takes for an order to be delivered.’

Shoppers are advised to look for the Specially Selected Pork label in supermarkets and butchers, and to visit the Scotch Kitchen website to discover a range of delicious recipes that support Scottish farmers.

The full list of stockists is available at

The research forms part of Go Places With Pork, a four-week long campaign reaching an estimated 3.5 million Scottish adults through an integrated mix of TV, press, digital and social advertising as well as supporting PR and influencer activity.

It was carried out by Censuswide from 2-6 September, interviewing 1,007 Scottish general respondents (Aged 16+) with a minimum of 50 respondents in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Stirling and Inverness.