AGE PROFILE of shellfish consumers Children 0-106% 10-165% Male 17-349% 35-6421% 65+10% Female 17-3410% 35-6426% Info: Usage overview of shellfish. In-home consumption The shellfish market is worth £187m in value There were 267 million meals featuring shellfish in the past year Adults aged 45-plus account for the largest share of consumption (55%) Most shellfish is eaten at the evening meal (59%), with consumption up 2% Nineteen per cent of shellfish is eaten on Saturday Fresh shellfish is now the healthy option Shellfish consumption has been in decline over the past year as a result of the fall in consumption of frozen shellfish, which accounts for 59% of the market. However, people have been eating 44% more fresh shellfish in the past three years, driven by older adults eating more. The evening meal is the most popular time to eat shellfish, while lunch accounts for 23% of consumption - up 2%. Consumption peaks on Saturday - as with most foods that are eaten for pleasure - and because shellfish is likely to be eaten for a special occasion. The over-45s are the key consumers, with females in this age group (30%) eating more than men (25%). These core groups are eating more fresh shellfish. Healthy eating is driving this growth but it is fresh that is benefiting rather than frozen, with 22% more consumers than last year selecting fresh. They are also looking for convenient methods to prepare meals, with an 18% increase of microwave cooking over the past year. Emilie Erktan