07 March, 2008
Shoppers are increasingly confident about the food they eat, according to a Food Standards Agency (FSA) survey, which found people are less concerned about issues such as additives, food poisoning and GM foods.
The eighth annual Consumer Attitudes to Food Survey found that, since 2006, the percentage of people concerned about additives had fallen from 38% to 35%. Those worried about food poisoning fell from 42% to 36%, while concerns about GM foods were down from 25% to 20%.The survey also found food labels remain important to shoppers looking for a range of information, such as allergy advice and additives. Half of respondents said they check labelling information when buying food, and almost half did not know the difference between 'use by' and 'sell by' dates on food.More than three-quarters (78%) of consumers are now aware that we should be eating at least five portions of fruit and vegetables each day, also an improvement on last year, and 58% claimed to be putting this into practice. The amounts of fat, saturated fat, salt and sugar in foods are still the main issues of concern among consumers. The quantities of fat and salt are the most commonly checked nutritional information on labels in the UK. But the percentage of people concerned about these is slightly down since 2006 - down to 40% from 46% for fat and to 50% from 54% for salt.