Views of crop, livestock treatment affect food safety confidence

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Growing interest in the practices used to produce meat and produce has made consumers less confident in the food available to them.

A consumer confidence survey shows fewer people have a “great deal” of confidence in food safety according to results of a recent study compared to data collected five years earlier. While one in four adults surveyed in 2008 expressed a “great deal” of confidence in food safety, the ratio decreased to one in six in an updated survey this summer.

Consumers are influenced by the growing number of choices available to them in their trip to the grocery store. The survey found common concerns about food safety were related to the amount of pesticides used on food, the antibiotics and growth hormones used in the livestock industry and consumer exposure to food-borne pathogens like e. coli and salmonella.

Participants of the survey also made an effort to purchase more fresh foods and avoid items with a long list of ingredients. They tended to gravitate to labels with the following buzzwords: all natural ingredients, no artificial ingredients, no artificial preservatives, no high fructose corn syrup, organic and no artificial colors.

Additionally, Millennials were the audience most likely to purchase foods labeled as ‘organic,’ ‘hormone-free’ and ‘free-range.’ Older generations were more focused on nutritional information.

The Multi-sponsor Survey, Study of Clean Food & Beverage Labels, surveyed 2,100 adults in May and June.



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