If forced to make the choice, more Canadians would choose pasta over other carbohydrates, followed by potatoes, and more distantly by rice.

  • Preferences vary regionally, with BC residents most likely to prefer rice compared to those in other provinces, and Quebec residents being most likely to prefer pasta.
  • Older and lower income residents are more likely to prefer potatoes compared to their respective counterparts.

June 10, 2022

Carbohydrates, including pasta, potatoes, and rice, are dietary staples not only in Canada, but around the world. They are the body’s main source of energy and are important for both human nutrition and overall health[1]. For these reasons – and because they are delicious – we asked Canadians to make a hypothetical choice: which carbohydrate would they choose if they could only have one of pasta, potatoes, or rice for the rest of their lives? As the favourite of four in ten Canadians, pasta reigns the most popular (41%). Meanwhile, one-third of residents would choose potatoes (33%) and just two in ten would pick rice among these three options (21%).

Preferred carbohydrate varies by region. In BC, pasta and rice are equally favourable, while in the Prairies, preference is strongest for pasta and potatoes. Ontario residents prefer pototoes, closely followed by pasta, but in Quebec, there is a strong preference for pasta over all else. Atlantic Canadians are equally likely to choose pasta as they are to choose potatoes, but are notably less likely to choose rice as their favourite carbohydrate.

When age is considered, older Canadians (aged 55+) are more likely to prefer potatoes compared to younger residents. Meanwhile, the preference for pasta is consistent across age groups while rice is slightly more popular among younger residents. Higher income earners are less likely to prefer potatoes, potentially pointing to the affordability of potatoes compared to pasta and rice.

[1] https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/nutrients/carbohydrates.html

Results shown are from a survey conducted in partnership between Narrative Research and the Logit Group. The survey was conducted online between May 17 and 19, 2022 with 1,234 Canadians 18 years of age or older from the Logit Group’s Canadian Omnibus. Data were weighted based on the 2016 Census, by gender, age, and region to reflect these population characteristics in each province. As a non-probability sample (i.e., a panel sample where residents have joined a panel to share their opinions), and in accordance with CRIC Public Opinion Research Standards, a margin of error is not applied.   

The question included in this press release included the following:

If you could only eat one of the following types of carbohydrates for the rest of your life, which would it be?

  • Pasta
  • Potatoes
  • Rice
  • None of the above

For more information, please contact:

Margaret Brigley, CEO, Narrative Research – 902.493-3830, mbrigley@narrativeresearch.ca


Sam Pisani, Managing Partner, Logit Group – 416.629.4116, sam.pisani@logitgroup.com

Narrative Research (www.narrativeresearch.ca), is a leading public opinion and market research company headquartered in Canada. The company was recently certified as a WBE (Women Business Enterprise). As a non-partisan, 100% Canadian-owned research company, Narrative Research is dedicated to providing clients with state-of-the-art research and strategic consulting services. 

The Logit Group (https://logitgroup.com/) is a leading North American data collection and market research execution company headquartered in Toronto, conducting large-scale projects for a variety of well-known research agencies and brands. Logit employs industry-best technologies across an array of methodologies, and is independent, experienced and quality-oriented. 

Follow us on Twitter at @EveryNarrative and @LogitGroup

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