Objective: Safety and quality associated with the production, marketing and consumption of food, together with overall levels of trust in the food supply chain, are increasing in importance in our society. The aim of this study was to identify the demographic differences in a range of safety and quality variables in regard to levels of consumer trust in the food supply chain. Design: An Australia-wide population telephone survey on a random sample of the Australian population aged 18+ years of age was undertaken. Univariate and multivariate analyses were undertaken on each of the eight safety and quality variables and one composite variable. Setting: Australia. Subjects: In total, 1108 interviews with 49.3% of the sample males and with a mean age of 45.12 years (SD 17.63). Results: Multivariate analysis indicated that gender (females), age (older persons) and annual household income (lower income) were the demographic groups more likely to be included in the final models that considered various quality and safety issues to be important. Higher education was related to more importance being placed on the variable assessing the importance of the producer maintain control of hygiene but lower education level was related to the variable assessing the importance of the premises being tested regularly by inspectors. Conclusion: The perceptions that adults place upon the safety and quality of food are important in ultimately defining, amongst other things, their food buying choices. As such, this research has highlighted demographic characteristics associated with the importance placed on a wide range of safety and quality issues so as to assist in providing evidence for targeting of appropriate campaigns to increase consumer confidence.
- Population survey
- Safety and quality