Consumers´ awareness of food safety
Keywords:Food, Product Packaging, Food Safety, Consumer, National Mark
Eating food is one of the most important needs of every person, so their safety and quality should be crucial for everyone. People expect, that food they eat is hygienically and health safe. Unfortunately, people usually start to focus on food safety only when various food scandals are exposed and it is too late. Mass consumption of food is the cause of a high risk to human health, but only in the case of harmful food. Food-borne diseases are a common and widespread phenomenon in all parts of the world, regardless of the economic development of the country. Protection of human, animal and plant health is one of the main economic priorities of each country. The political objective of the European Union is therefore to ensure that European Union citizens have access to safe and nutritious foods, so it must meet strict safety standards. In ensuring food safety, it is necessary to take into account all aspects of the food production chain as a whole, because each subject can have a potential impact on food safety. This paper deals with the issues of food safety and food quality. The main objective was to find out how consumers perceive higher quality food and whether they read information included on the food packaging. Primary data were obtained from a survey that was conducted on the sample of 478 respondents living in Slovakia. For a deeper analysis, several assumptions, which were verified by Friedman Test, Chi-Square Test of Independence, Wilcoxon Signed-Rank Test, were formulated. The survey has found out that 84% of respondents buy higher quality food and 60% purchase them because of health-related reasons. More than half of respondents search for the information about food safety on the Internet and the same percentage considere government as the most reliable source of information about food safety. Unfortunately, just more than one quarter of them read the information on food label and for 34% is this information unsufficient.
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