Like on the level of food consum ing preferences, dissonant trends also appear in eating out habits and, as a result the market is being further polarized. Sales at eating and drinking establishments are up more than 4% this year, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, surpassing grocery sales at just 3% year-over-year growth. Time-starved and convenience-seeking consumers are showing a growing appetite for having food delivered at home, a bright spot in an otherwise lackluster restaurant industry. According to NPD, half of the people’s dining expenses are spent eating out, yet 82% of the meals are prepared at home. “That’s a new trend.” The average American adult buys a meal or snack from a restaurant 5.8 times a week, according to the 2015 government study reported by multiple media outlets.