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Avian influenza in the UK: knowledge, risk perception and risk reduction strategies

Avian influenza in the UK: knowledge, risk perception and risk reduction strategies Purpose – The purpose of the paper is to put across the concerns about the potential health hazards to consumers of products following various food scandals (i.e. BSE and the foot and mouth epidemics) have resurfaced again in the poultry market with avian influenza. Changes in patterns of consumption inevitably follow such incidences and the behaviours adopted very often follow risk assessment of the situation. The paper aims to examine and explain the drivers of changes of consumption in a unique segment of the market. Design/methodology/approach – Students were chosen in accordance with previous studies of this type as they represent a homogeneous group, well informed and significant in numbers. The work of Slovic was used to construct a questionnaire to assess consumer risk and this was then extended to the area of consumption change according to the strategies identified by Roselius. Findings – Through a correlation of risk based variables with changes in behaviour, a consumption change model is developed which demonstrates that knowledge, assessment of the potential for disaster and experience from past food scandals are the main drivers of change. Originality/value – The research was performed immediately after the confirmation of the first H5N1 case in the UK and gives insight on how consumer behaviour is influenced by such an event. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png British Food Journal Emerald Publishing

Avian influenza in the UK: knowledge, risk perception and risk reduction strategies

British Food Journal , Volume 110 (3): 11 – Mar 21, 2008

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0007-070X
DOI
10.1108/00070700810858673
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The purpose of the paper is to put across the concerns about the potential health hazards to consumers of products following various food scandals (i.e. BSE and the foot and mouth epidemics) have resurfaced again in the poultry market with avian influenza. Changes in patterns of consumption inevitably follow such incidences and the behaviours adopted very often follow risk assessment of the situation. The paper aims to examine and explain the drivers of changes of consumption in a unique segment of the market. Design/methodology/approach – Students were chosen in accordance with previous studies of this type as they represent a homogeneous group, well informed and significant in numbers. The work of Slovic was used to construct a questionnaire to assess consumer risk and this was then extended to the area of consumption change according to the strategies identified by Roselius. Findings – Through a correlation of risk based variables with changes in behaviour, a consumption change model is developed which demonstrates that knowledge, assessment of the potential for disaster and experience from past food scandals are the main drivers of change. Originality/value – The research was performed immediately after the confirmation of the first H5N1 case in the UK and gives insight on how consumer behaviour is influenced by such an event.

Journal

British Food JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Mar 21, 2008

Keywords: Risk analysis; Animal diseases; United Kingdom; Poultry; Health and safety; Food products

References