Navigation Links
Rutgers study finds many consumers ignore food product recalls
Date:4/14/2009

NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. Rutgers' Food Policy Institute (FPI) released a study today showing that many Americans fail to check their homes for recalled food products. Only about 60 percent of the studied sample reported ever having looked for recalled food in their homes, and only 10 percent said they had ever found a recalled food product.

The study was based on a survey of 1,101 Americans interviewed by telephone from Aug. 4 to Sept. 24, 2008. The study can be downloaded at www.foodpolicy.rutgers.edu.

Most respondents said they pay a great deal of attention to food recalls and, when they learn about them, tell many other people. But 40 percent of these consumers think that the foods they purchase are less likely to be recalled than those purchased by others, appearing to believe that food recalls just don't apply to them.

Despite widespread awareness of recent foodborne illness outbreaks and a sense that the number of food recalls is increasing, about half of Americans say that food recalls have had no impact on their lives, said psychologist William K. Hallman, a professor of human ecology at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. "Getting consumers to pay attention to news about recalls isn't the hard part," he said. "It's getting them to take the step of actually looking for recalled food products in their homes." Hallman is also the director of FPI and lead author of the study report.

The Rutgers researchers also offered suggestions about how to improve communications about food recalls. Nearly 75 percent of those surveyed said they would like to receive personalized information about recalls on their receipt at the grocery store, and more than 60 percent said they also would also like to receive such information through a letter or an e-mail.

Hallman said that personalizing communications about food recalls may be the way to overcome the sense that the messages are meant for someone else. Providing consumers with recall information about specific products they have purchased makes it harder for them to ignore the advice to look for the recalled items.

But even when people find recalled food, not all do what they are told. Approximately 12 percent reported eating a food they thought had been recalled. [0]At the other extreme, some consumers take a "better safe than sorry" attitude. More than 25 percent reported that they had simply discarded food products after hearing about a recall, potentially wasting safe, nutritious food. Many consumers also avoid purchasing products not included in the recall but which are similar, or are from the same manufacturer.

"Our research also points out that instructions to consumers must be clear and comprehensible if you want them to act appropriately after a food recall," Hallman said. He cites the Food and Drug Administration's recent advice to consumers not to eat pistachios, but to hold onto them and not throw them away as confusing to consumers.

"We found that clear, direct messages such as 'throw the food in the garbage' or 'return the food to the store for a refund,' should motivate action. Keeping people in a holding pattern is more likely to result in inaction, and it certainly increases the likelihood that someone might eat the food by accident."

The authors of the study are William K. Hallman and Cara L. Cuite, researchers at FPI, and Neal H. Hooker, a researcher at the Ohio State University. The study was funded by the United States Department of Agriculture and the Grocery Manufacturers Association.

An earlier report based on data from the same survey provided insight into consumer awareness of the Salmonella Saintpaul advisory in the summer of 2008. The report is also available at www.foodpolicy.rutgers.edu.

FPI is a research unit of Rutgers' New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station. The institute addresses important emerging food policy issues and supports public and private decision makers who shape aspects of the food system within which government, agriculture, industry and the consumer interact.


'/>"/>

Contact: Joseph Blumberg
blumberg@ur.rutgers.edu
732-932-7084 x652
Rutgers University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Rutgers Genetics receives $7.8 million for autism research
2. Rutgers high school outreach gets $3 million boost from NSF
3. Homeland Security awards 2 grants to Rutgers for nuclear threat detection
4. Rutgers scientists research reveals critical knowledge about the nervous system
5. USDA Cooperative Agreement funds mosquito project at Rutgers
6. Raydiance collaborates with Rutgers, MTF to develop innovative tissue processing approaches
7. Better protection for biomedial devices could result from Rutgers-Camden research
8. Rutgers biologist to study worms in Amazon, glaciers
9. $3.2M for Rutgers to apply biology, engineering, physical sciences toward stem cells
10. No helicopter moms among Rutgers mutant mice
11. Rutgers scholar authors definitive biography of reproductive medicine pioneer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/3/2017)... WASHINGTON , Feb. 3, 2017 A ... Identity Strategy Partners, LLP (IdSP) . Designed to ... in the complex identity market, founding partners Mark ... nearly 35 combined years just in identity expertise that ... tank and non-profit leadership. The Crego-Kephart combined expertise has ...
(Date:2/2/2017)... -- Central to its deep commitment to honor the ... Prize Foundation today announced the laureates of the ... in their respective fields of Life Sciences and ... recognized with the 2017 Japan Prize for original ... the advancement of science and technology, but also ...
(Date:1/30/2017)... 2017   Invitae Corporation (NYSE: ... companies, today announced that it will report its fourth ... guidance on Monday, February 13, 2017, and Invitae,s management ... 4:45 p.m. Eastern / 1:45 p.m. Pacific. ... review financial results, guidance, and recent developments and will ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/18/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... A leader ... Hong Kong. , Nerium International is proud to introduce its Age-Defying Night Cream, ... NeriumAD™ Formula to consumers across Hong Kong. The luxury skincare products contain innovative ...
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... Academy of Model ... world’s leading maker of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), are launching a joint program ... drones effectively, and support educational outreach efforts. , AMA and DJI will collaborate ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... and GREENWICH, Conn. , Feb. ... firm focused on venture growth investments in biotechnology ... Josh Richardson , M.D. to Managing Director. ... biotechnology companies.  He is a board observer at ... in Longitude,s investments in Aimmune Therapeutics, Akebia Therapeutics, ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... HOLLISTON, Mass. , Feb. 16, 2017   ... or the "Company"), a biotechnology company developing bioengineered organ ... the esophagus, bronchus and trachea, announced today the closing ... offering of 20,000,000 shares of common stock and warrants ... gross proceeds of $8.0 million. The offering was priced ...
Breaking Biology Technology: