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:1/11/2017)... MOINES, Iowa , Jan. 11, 2017 ... industry first with the release of its patent-pending calibration ... quickly and reliably perform calibrations, securely upload data logs ... flexibility for the customer. "Fighting drunk driving ... only for the public at large, but also for ...
(Date:1/6/2017)...  Delta ID Inc., a leader in consumer-grade iris ... at CESĀ® 2017. Delta ID has collaborated with Gentex ... use of iris scanning as a secure, reliable and ... a car, and as a way to elevate the ... Delta ID and Gentex will demonstrate (booth #7326 LVCC) ...
(Date:12/22/2016)... Calif. , Dec. 20, 2016  As part of ... 23andMe, the leading personal genetics company, recently released its latest ... . The book focuses on the topics of inheritance ... Generation Science Standards (NGSS) taught in elementary school classrooms in ... in a series by illustrator Ariana Killoran , whose ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/13/2017)... Jan 13, 2017 Research and Markets has announced ... their offering. ... biopolymers market to grow at a CAGR of 16.83% during the period ... growth prospects of the global biopolymers market for 2017-2021. To calculate the ... sales of biopolymer products. The report also includes a a discussion of ...
(Date:1/13/2017)... ... January 13, 2017 , ... FireflySci, in ... its customers three new solutions for measurements where traditional cuvette applications are not ... customer has an oddly-shaped sample that would not fit into a typical cuvette ...
(Date:1/12/2017)... , ... January 12, 2017 ... ... devices with short response times capable of performing routine electrochemical biosensing has ... screen-printed electrodes provide fast, sensitive detection and quantification of various analytes in ...
(Date:1/12/2017)... , January 12, 2017 ... the world,s biggest facility for producing mycorrhizae. The Centre ... nutrient tapping potential of mycorrhizae and developed a technology ... ... http://mma.prnewswire.com/media/456932/PRNE_TERI_Logo.jpg) The TERI facility has ...
Breaking Biology Technology: