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Ecolabels don’t influence consumer food choice, study says

February 21, 2014

Ecolabels don’t influence consumer food choice, study says

Consumers are concerned about sustainability, but their understanding is limited and ecolabels rarely influence food purchases, according to a study by the European Food Information Council.

The study, “Sustainability labels on food products: Consumer motivation, understanding and use”, which surveyed 4,408 respondents living in the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Sweden and Poland says, consumers have a medium to high-level of concern with sustainability issues at a general level. That level of concern ? and understanding ? falls when it comes to making food and beverage choices.

The study, which was published in Food Policy, tested environmental and ethical aspects against nutritional value and price and found sustainability had no meaningful impact on food choice, across all product categories.

Researchers say the results don’t necessarily imply that sustainability information will not play a role in future food purchases. However, compared to health and nutrition-related issues, sustainability is more difficult to grasp and, as a result, it struggles to be relevant in a consumer’s mindset during purchases.

Read more at Environmental Leader.

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