CHICAGO — Although more than half of consumers are more concerned about their eating habits today compared to a year ago, 70% say healthier foods are increasingly difficult to afford, according to results from food industry research firm Technomic’s recent consumer survey.

Fifty-three percent claim they often purchase less-healthy foods because they cost less and 44% say their budgets prevent them from eating healthier foods. The survey also revealed that consumers generally regard popular lower-priced restaurant options to be less healthy.

"Healthy eating is still important to consumers, but evidence strongly suggests it is a lower priority these days," says Bob Goldin, executive vice-president. "Consumers are economizing in their food expenditures and believe that one way to do so is to spend less on healthy foods. It’s an unfortunate development."