It’s almost impossible to find cafes in Sydney’s affluent eastern suburbs that don’t serve smashed avocado on toast – but eateries in swathes of the city’s west don’t put the trendy breakfast on the menu at all, new research has found.
A group of geography researchers from Sydney University who surveyed 200 cafes across the city found that the inner-eastern suburb of Edgecliff is the most expensive place to buy the dish, with prices hitting $18.
In recent months some commentators have blamed millennials’ habit of spending too much on expensive treats like ‘smashed avo’, but one of the study’s authors rejects that ‘stereotype’.
The study’s author Jesse Dolan told Daily Mail Australia that diners can find smashed avocados on toast at cafes in eastern suburbs such as Bondi Junction, Edgecliff and the CBD with complete ease, but maintains that people who buy the expensive dish are not frittering away money they should spend on property.
Research finds smash avocados found mainly in Sydney’s affluent suburbs (stock image)
‘A fundamental consideration in avo-economics is income and how this does not necessarily correlate with the millennial avocado on toast stereotype but more distinctly aligns to income,’ the research paper titled ‘Smashed Avocado: A Sociopolitical Scapegoat of Legitimate Issue’ found.
‘A major issue facing the Sydney housing market is wage stagnation as the lack of wage inflation and the relatively weak employment market create a dire outlook for Sydney’s first homebuyers,’ the paper continued.
The research also found that many millennials aged 20-29 reside in Sydney’s eastern suburbs because the area is close to their workplaces, but they are still able to save enough on accommodation to afford the costly breakfast.
‘Many millennials live in shared homes and high-density dwellings to minimize the cost of rent while remaining remain close to the city and amenities for maximum efficiency.
‘The lower cost of living allows higher expenditure on cultural experiences and dining–out culture thus contributing to the higher cost of avocado in these regions.’
The trendy breakfast can be found in some Western Sydney cafes situated in the Parramatta and Blacktown areas, as the suburbs are becoming a hub for the city’s hip and trendy to live in due to affordable housing and rent.
But the survey found the dish was not available in cafes in lower-income western Sydney areas such as Harris Park, Wentworthville, Quakers Hill, Riverstone, Vineyard, Mulgrave, Clarendon, East Richmond, Doonside, Rooty Hill and Kingswood.
Mr Doolan said this could be because many living in these suburbs are in the minimum wage bracket and had not developed a penchant for the expensive dish.
Cafes in eastern Sydney suburbs like Bondi (pictured) are ground zero for smashed avocado
‘The goal of the report was to take a geographical perspective on an issue which has been over-politicised in attempt to have some fun and see whether there existed any reasoning or science behind the arguments.
‘We wanted to see whether there were any geographic paradigms behind the argument, which ultimately revealed that the spread of avocado was associated closely with high incomes.
‘Our studies suggest that the reason smashed avocados aren’t as common in the west is because it exists outside the CBD and possesses a slightly different social structure and therefore consumer demands.
‘Potentially linked to the demographics, with a higher migrant population, foodstuff availability are different due to cultural backgrounds,’ Mr Doolan said.
Mr Doolan said he had worked with researcher Chris Ducklin on the findings in the paper and had surveyed a total of 200 cafes through phone, email or the Internet over the course of three weeks.
The smashed avocado on toast meal has been a hotly discussed topic in recent months as many have blamed the high cost of meal for the inability of young people being able to save enough for a house deposit.