**Australians eating out more and more: study **

Statistics of several types adorn this article: averages, totals, percentages and rates. There are five references to average in three different contexts; these would be worth comparing. For example, what kind of information is conveyed in figures like "spend $700 a year eating out" compared to "one in four meals is eaten away from home"? Students might discuss which is more meaningful to them. The presentation of statistics in terms of outlets per 100,000 people is common to avoid the use of small decimal numbers. When comparing Australia and America notice that only one kind of outlet is considered.

There is a check on the figures in the first paragraph by working out the population of Australia. Notice the three categories of food outlets described, which make possible the drawing of graphs and other comparisons. Note however, the inconsistency in the reporting of the amounts of money spent on the categories: here two of the three categories are combined. It also appears as if $1.5 billion has been lost somewhere in the calculations.

This article could be a source of motivation for further research into the report or data collection in a local area to find similar statistics. In the latter case the definition of the three categories of outlets will be very interesting.

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