Reports

Consumer survey on salted fish

Published:

30/08/2019

Authors:

Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Supported by:

AG Fisk, AVS Research Fund

contact

Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir

Sensory evaluation manager

adalheiduro@matis.is

Consumer survey on salted fish

There is a long tradition for processing salted fish in this country, but before that the salt was used primarily to extend the shelf life of the fish. Today, salted fish is considered a gourmet product that is very popular in many parts of the world, not least in Southern Europe, where the traditions and quality of Icelandic salted fish play a major role. Matís ran workshops with salted fish producers and chefs in April and May 2019. Their goal was, among other things, to assess the position of salted fish in the domestic market. It was stated that information was needed on Icelanders' views on salted fish in order to better assess the opportunities in Iceland. Based on the results of the workshops, an online survey was conducted with the aim of researching the image of salted fish products in the minds of Icelanders, general knowledge of salted fish and its history, and the experience of salted fish. The consumption frequency of salted fish, lightly salted fish and night-salted fish was also examined, as well as attitudes towards salted fish compared to lightly salted and night-salted fish. The survey was conducted in May 2019 and was published by 17,000 Facebook users, 18 years and older. A total of 505 people completed the survey.

There was a big difference in the participants' answers according to age. The results show that consumption of both fish and salted fish decreases with decreasing age. Only about 29% participants aged 18-29 eat salted fish once a year or more often than the corresponding proportion for the oldest group, 60-70 years, is about 94%. The main reason why participants do not eat salted fish is that they do not like it. Other reasons are that it is too salty, lack of supply, that there is little tradition for salted fish, and that fresh fish is preferred. In general, attitudes towards salted fish were quite positive and the experience of those who have bought salted fish in a restaurant, fish shop and grocery store was good. However, younger participants are generally more negative about salted fish and more likely to find the taste of salted fish bad than older ones. Knowledge and interest in salted fish also decreases with decreasing age, and the same applies to the purchase frequency of salted fish, lightly salted fish and night-salted fish. The results indicate that the taste of salted fish varies according to age. Older participants are more likely to want salted fish well salted and find it less salty than younger ones.

Saltfish has been intertwined with Icelandic history and food culture for centuries. The results of this survey, however, show declining knowledge, interest and consumption of salted fish in younger age groups. This development can be explained by an increased selection of foods, changed tastes, attitudes and habits. It is likely that the image of salted fish as a quality product will be affected and that great changes are taking place in the consumption of salted fish among Icelanders. In order to promote the consumption of salted fish, it needs to be better promoted and made more visible, not least among younger age groups, whether in canteens, supermarkets, fishmongers or restaurants.

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Reports

Attitudes and buying behavior of Icelandic consumers of horsemeat

Published:

01/04/2019

Authors:

Eva Margrét Jónudóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Guðjón Þorkelsson

Supported by:

Agricultural Productivity Fund

contact

Eva Margrét Jónudóttir

Researcher

evamargret@matis.is

Attitudes and buying behavior of Icelandic consumers of horsemeat

The aim of this study was to submit proposals to improve the position of horsemeat in the domestic market. A quantitative research method analyzed the attitudes and purchasing behavior of Icelandic consumers (n = 853) of horsemeat. The results were, among other things, that horse and foal meat is not prominent enough and visible in stores all over the country. Most people who buy horse and / or foal meat buy it from the refrigerator or about 50% participants, but the next most common is that people get the meat from friends, relatives, slaughter it themselves, buy it directly from a farm or more. More often than not, people made little distinction between attitudes towards horsemeat on the one hand and foal meat on the other. In terms of willingness to buy products, most said they were less likely to buy minced or smoked horsemeat, but most likely to buy steaks, goldfish and schnitzel. In the opinion of the participants in the study, habits and upbringing have the greatest effect on the consumption of horse and foal meat, followed by knowledge of the product. There are many opportunities in the sale of horsemeat. Most of those who took part in the study were really positive and welcomed the discussion about horsemeat. 96% of the participants had tasted horse and / or foal meat but those who had not tasted were not interested, either because they did not eat meat over their heads or because they felt like eating their dog and considered it wrong because of emotions. Superstitions and prejudices against the consumption of horsemeat seem to have passed long ago, but the public's knowledge of the quality and treatment of horsemeat could be increased. Most people considered horsemeat and foal meat to be a clean and environmentally friendly food, free of antibiotics and contaminants. All that can be said is that there are opportunities for marketing horsemeat and it can be assumed that with many trumps in hand, a big hit can be won if the cards are held correctly.

The aim of this study was to improve the status of horse meat on the Icelandic market. A quantitative research method was used to study the attitudes and buying behavior of Icelandic consumers on horse meat (n = 853). The results showed that horse and foal meat is not prominent and visible in stores in Iceland. Most people who buy horse and / or foal meat buy it from stores, refrigerated, or about 50% of the participants, but most often people get the meat from friends, relatives, slaughter themselves or buy directly from farms. Attitudes towards horse meat and foal meat were generally similar. In terms of buying a product, most people were the least likely to buy a buried or smoked horse meat, but most likely to buy steaks, guillemots and chips. The respondents believed that habits and upbringing had the most effect on horse and foal meat consumption, but knowledge of the product was in the third place. There are many opportunities in the sale of horse meat provided for quality products. Most of the participants were positive towards horse meat and welcomed the discussion on horse meat. 96% of the participants in the survey had tasted horse and / or foal meat. Those who had not tasted the meat, had no interest, either because they did not eat meat or because they felt like eating their dog and felt it was wrong because of emotions. Pastoralism and prejudice towards horse meat appear to belong to the past, but there is room for improvement of consumer knowledge of quality and treatment of horse meat. Most people considered the horse and foal meat to be clean and environmentally friendly food, free of antibiotics and contaminants. The marketing possibilities for horse meat are good.

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Reports

Food and sustainable tourism. Summary.

Published:

01/04/2014

Authors:

Þóra Valsdóttir, Guðjón Þorkelsson

Supported by:

Technology Development Fund

contact

Þóra Valsdóttir

Project Manager

thora.valsdottir@matis.is

Food and sustainable tourism. Summary.

Food and sustainable tourism was a priority and cluster project to promote environmentally friendly food production and food processing in connection with tourism. The project was carried out by public bodies in the business support system, regional development associations and the University of Iceland. The project was carried out in response to a great deal of interest in local food and the environment in connection with the growing activities in tourism. The emphasis was on supporting entrepreneurs in the development of new products and sales channels that benefit tourism in each area. The innovation segment was successful and had a multiplier effect both domestically, nationally and internationally. At the same time, important research was conducted on sustainability criteria, consumer attitudes and quality and shelf life. The communication and communication part of the project was no less important. This report briefly describes the progress of the project and the main conclusions.

Food and Sustainable Tourism was a 3 year collaboration project between academia, R&D institutions and regional development agencies. In the project focus was put on strengthening small scale local food production to encourage sustainability in tourism. The project was executed as a response to rise in interest in local food and environmental issues within tourism. Focus was put on supporting entrepreneurs developing new products and sales channels. Research on sustainability indicators, consumer attitudes and product quality was carried out.

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Reports

Consumer's evaluation of enriched seafood product concepts / Consumer survey of enriched seafood dishes

Published:

01/03/2013

Authors:

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Kyösti Pennanen, Raija ‐ Liisa Heiniö, Rósa Jónsdóttir, Emilía Martinsdóttir

Supported by:

Nordic Innovation

contact

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Project Manager

kolbrun.sveinsdottir@matis.is

Consumer's evaluation of enriched seafood product concepts / Consumer survey of enriched seafood dishes

Compared to consumers elsewhere in the West, consumers in Europe seem to be more skeptical about food enrichment, and although food health claims carry a message of health effects, they do not necessarily make the product more attractive to consumers. Therefore, the development of enriched foods requires an understanding of consumer demands. An online survey was conducted to evaluate consumers' responses to product ideas on seafood that had been enriched with omega-3, fish proteins and algae, with different information on possible effects and functional properties. Icelandic consumers (n = 460) evaluated ideas for cod products and the results showed that enrichment of such seafood was a viable option, especially with omega-3. Although information on enrichment had a rather negative effect on people's experience of product ideas, information on ingredients and health effects of consumption had a positive effect on people's experience and the likelihood of buying the products in question. The impact of such information was somewhat greater among those consumers who placed more emphasis on health and had a positive attitude towards targeted foods. Finnish consumers (n = 432) evaluated ideas for salmon products and the results showed that the enrichment of seafood with kelp was one of the best results, especially when information on the reduction of salt content was included. From the results, it can be concluded that the enrichment of seafood is a realistic option. However, it is very important to consider the labels and information to consumers about such products.

Compared to consumers elsewhere in the Western world, European consumers generally seem to be more suspicious towards enrichment of food. Although health claims in food products communicate the health effect, it does not necessarily make the products more appealing to consumers. Therefore, development of enriched foods requires understanding of consumers' demands. The aim of this study was to measure consumer responses towards various concepts of enriched seafood products. Web ‐ based questionnaires were used to study Icelandic and Finnish consumers' responses towards concepts of convenience seafood products enriched with omega ‐ 3, fish proteins and seaweed extracts with different information about possible effects / functional properties. Icelandic consumers (n = 460) evaluated cod product concepts and the results showed that enrichment of convenience seafood was a realistic option, especially with omega ‐ 3. Although information about enrichment had rather negative effects, information about ingredients and health effects positively affected product perception and buying intention. The effect of information was greater among consumers which placed higher emphasis on health and expressed more positive attitudes towards functional foods. Two sets of Finnish consumers (n = 432) evaluated nine salmon product concepts. The results showed that products enriched with seaweed received relatively the highest scores, especially when information about salt reduction was provided. To conclude, enrichment of convenience seafood products with marine based ingredients is a realistic option. However, it is very important to consider labeling and information provided to the consumers.

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Reports

Enriched seafood

Published:

01/04/2012

Authors:

Emilia Martinsdóttir, Rósa Jónsdóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Margrét Geirsdóttir, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Helga Helgadóttir, Gísli M. Gíslason

Supported by:

AVS

contact

Rósa Jónsdóttir

Group Leader

rosa.jonsdottir@matis.is

Enriched seafood

The project Enriched Seafood, which was carried out in collaboration with the company Grím kokk in the Westman Islands and Iceprotein in Sauðárkrókur, is now being completed. There, several prototypes of products from Icelandic seafood were developed and added to them, such as algae concentrate with defined bioactivity, hydrolysates to increase protein content and fish oil to increase omega-3 fatty acids. The results show that it is possible to increase the amount of omega-3 fatty acids in fish balls without compromising the taste quality. The same can be said about the addition of algae powder and also succeeded in increasing the amount of protein in the fish balls. Consumer surveys were conducted to examine consumers' tastes for prototypes compared to traditional products already on the market. Information on the bioactive substances and their activity influenced how people liked the products. The effect of the information depended on various factors, such as attitudes towards health and food and attitudes towards the ingredients of the product tested. An online consumer survey of more than 500 people showed that people are generally more positive about enrichment in the case of known health products such as omega-3. It is also better to provide information on effectiveness even if it is a known substance, as it enhances people's positive experience of the product. Enrichment with kelp also seems to be a viable option as information on the use value of kelp in the product was given and the same can be said regarding fish protein. These products generally appeal more to people who focus on food hygiene, which is a fairly large group according to these findings. In general, it can be concluded from these results that the enrichment of seafood is a realistic possibility, but labeling and information to consumers must be considered. Based on these results, it can be concluded that the enrichment of seafood is a realistic possibility, but labeling and information to consumers must be considered.

Prototypes of seafood dishes enriched with bioactive compounds from the ocean, such as seaweed, fish proteins and fish oil to increase omega-3 fatty acids have been developed to meet market demand. The results show that it is possible to increase the content of omega ‐ 3 fatty acids in fishcakes without negatively affecting the flavor. Also the enrichment of seaweed and fish proteins to increase protein content was successful. Consumers were asked about liking of various prototypes compared to traditional fish dishes. Information on the added compounds and their bio ‐ activity affected the liking of the consumers. Influence of information depended on various factors like attitudes towards health, food and the added ingredients. Web ‐ based consumer survey (500 respondents) showed that consumers were more positive towards enrichment of seafood if well ‐ known ingredients like omega ‐ 3 were used. The information on health ‐ effect and bio ‐ activity was also positive regarding the consumer experience. even though the ingredients were well ‐ known. Enrichment using seaweed or proteins also seems to be a realistic option based on information of the health effect given. These kinds of products appeal more to consumers emphasizing health benefits of their food. It can be stated from the results of the project that enrichment of seafood is a realistic option but labeling and information to consumers is important.

Report closed until 01.04.2015

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Reports

Attitudes and fish consumption in Iceland 2011

Published:

01/12/2011

Authors:

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Dagný Yrsa Eyþórsdóttir, Gunnþórunn Einarsdóttir, Emilia Martinsdóttir

Supported by:

Student Innovation Fund, Rannís

contact

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Project Manager

kolbrun.sveinsdottir@matis.is

Attitudes and fish consumption in Iceland 2011

The aim of the study was to examine consumption habits and attitudes related to seafood among Icelanders aged 18-80. A survey was set up online and letters were sent to a sample from Statistics Iceland in June 2011 and responses were received from 525 people. The aim was also to examine the changes that have taken place in Icelanders' attitudes and fish consumption since the last figures were published in 2006 for people aged 18-26. Attitudes and consumption of Icelanders were analyzed by gender, age, place of residence, education, monthly household income before tax, number in the household and number of children under 18 in the household. On average, Icelanders eat fish as a main course about twice a week. Haddock is the most popular species on the tables of the people and is consumed about once a week, followed by cod. On average, Icelanders take fish oil about four times a week, but in total about half of Icelanders take fish oil daily and 62% three times a week or more. In general, Icelanders seem to eat fresh but frozen fish more often and very little is bought from prepared fish dishes chilled or frozen. Attitudes towards eating fish are generally very positive and the vast majority consider fish healthy and good. Most people believe that family has the most encouraging effect on fish consumption and that a wider budget, easier access to fresh fish and a wider range of fish could have an effect on increased fish consumption. There is a big difference between fish consumption and the attitudes of men and women. Women prefer to buy food and place more emphasis on hygiene, freshness, accessibility and price. They are also of the opinion that it is expensive to eat fish. There was a significant difference between age groups, both in terms of total fish consumption frequency, consumption of different fish products and attitudes. Fish consumption increases with age, as does fish oil consumption. The emphasis on hygiene is lower among younger people. There was a difference in the consumption behavior and consumption of different fish species and products according to residence, which can probably be largely explained by traditions and different supply of fish. Most people, especially those in the older age group, find it rather expensive to eat fish. On the other hand, they find fish more valuable than younger ones. However, it seems that the youngest group is even willing to pay more for fish, as they are of the opinion that a wider range of ready-made fish dishes and fish dishes in restaurants could have an effect on increased fish consumption. Positive changes have taken place in fish consumption and attitudes of people aged 18-26 in the last five years. This group is now more in favor of fish and the frequency of fish consumption has increased somewhat, which is mainly explained by increased fish consumption outside the home. Consumption of fish oil and diversity in the choice of seafood seems to have increased. In this age group, there has been an increase in the consumption of fresh fish, sushi, salted fish and chilled semi-prepared dishes.

The aim of the study was to investigate seafood consumption and attitudes among 18‐80 year old Icelanders. A total of 525 people completed a web-based survey. The aim was also to study changes in attitudes and fish consumption in the last five years among people 18-26 years. The data were analyzed by gender, age, residence, education, income, number of household members and number of children below 18 years. On average, the fish consumption frequency (fish as main course) is around two times a week. Haddock is the most frequently consumed fish species and is consumed around one time per week. Fish oil is consumed four times a week on average, but 50% of the participants consume fish oil every day. Fresh fish is more frequently consumed than frozen fish and ready fish meals, chilled or frozen, are rarely bought. Attitudes towards consuming fish are generally very positive. Most people consider family to have the most encouraging influence on their fish consumption and that less stringent finances, easier access to fresh fish and more variety of fish could positively influence their fish consumption. Fish consumption pattern and attitudes differ by gender. Women more frequently purchase food and emphasize more healthy food, freshness, access and price. Large differences were found between different age groups, both regarding fish consumption frequency, fish products and attitudes. Fish consumption and fish oil consumption frequency increase with age. Emphasis on healthy food are less among younger people. Consumption habits and consumption of different fish species and products differ by residence around the country. This can largely be explained by different traditions and different fish supply. Most people, especially in older age groups consider it expensive to consume fish. They are, however, more likely to consider fish money worth compared to younger people. The youngest age group appears though to be ready to pay more for fish as their opinion is that more variety of ready fish meals and fish courses at restaurants could positively influence their fish consumption. The last five years, positive changes in fish consumption and attitudes among people 18-26 years have occurred. This group now consumes fish more frequently, the varity in their choice of seafood has increased. The consumption of fresh fish, sushi, salted cod and chilled oven ready fish meals has increased among this group.

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Reports

Product development of healthier processed meat products

Published:

01/08/2009

Authors:

Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Ólafur Reykdal, Óli Þór Hilmarsson, Gunnþórunn Einarsdóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Þóra Valsdóttir, Emilia Martinsdóttir, Guðjón Þorkelsson

Supported by:

Technology Development Fund, Agricultural Productivity Fund

contact

Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir

Sensory evaluation manager

adalheiduro@matis.is

Product development of healthier processed meat products

The goal of the "Healthy Meat Products" project was to develop healthier ready-made meat products with less salt and hard fats. In the product development process, sensory evaluation was used to assess the sensory quality of the products and consumer surveys to check how consumers liked the product. Consumer surveys were conducted both at home and at work. The results of sensory evaluation and consumer surveys were used to decide on changes in the production process to adapt the products to consumer tastes. Microbial and chemical measurements were performed to monitor the shelf life and chemical content of the products. Consumption habits of processed meat products and attitudes towards low-fat and low-salt meat products were studied. The project succeeded in producing fat- and salt-reduced products from three product categories: new meat products, pre-fried meat products and cold cuts. One of those products is now ready for the market. The new product received very good reviews from consumers and even better than the product that was on the market. The other two products have come a long way in product development and the company now has the knowledge and experience to complete that product development and continue with the development of such products. Consumers are generally positive about fat reduction in meat products. However, there is a difference in their answers depending on which product is involved and there is also a difference between the sexes. The vast majority consider low-fat meat products to be healthier than products with a traditional fat content. For consumers, the most important thing is that the product is tasty. Price is also important, but less so. Consumers often make the same quality demands on low-fat and traditional products. Consumers care about the hygiene of meat products but are not willing to replace the taste quality with hygiene. There was a difference in the attitudes of men and women. Women think more about healthy food than men and are more positive about low-fat meat products. They are also more likely to buy low-fat meat products. Women rather than men check whether the product is environmentally friendly. Package information is important. About two-thirds of consumers say they look at fat content when choosing meat products. About half of consumers look at the amount of salt, so it seems that most people care less about the amount of fat. Care must be taken with the labeling and content description of salt and low-fat meat products, as this affects consumers' choices and expectations.

The aim of the project was to develop healthier processed meat products with lower salt and fat content. In the production development process, the sensory attributes of the prototypes were evaluated by a trained sensory panel. Consumer tests were conducted to study the consumer liking of the products. The consumer tests were done in different settings as central location tests and in-home tests. The results from the sensory evaluation and the consumer test were used to make decisions on the next steps in the product development. Microbiological and chemical analysis was performed to estimate the storage life and nutritional status of the products. The consumption pattern and consumer attitudes towards processed meat products with reduced fat- and salt content were studied. In the project the product development of three products in different product categories was successful. One of the products is ready for marketing and consumer tests indicated better liking of this new prototype than of the traditional one. The two other products need further development and the company now has the competence and experience to finalize the development. Consumers are generally in favor of fat-reduced meat products but there is a gender difference and a difference towards different product categories. Most of the consumers believe that fat-reducing meat products are healthier than traditional products. The taste is most important to most consumers and the price is also important. The consumers make the same demands to quality of fat-reduced food as other food. Consumers find the healthiness of food important, but not as important as the taste. Women are more aware of the healthiness of food and they are more positive towards fat-reduce meat products. They are more likely to buy fat reduced food and more aware of environmentally friendly food. The information on the packaging is important. Two thirds of consumers look for the fat content on the food label of the product they buy, but only half of them look at the salt content. Labeling and packaging information is very important as it affects the choice and expectations of the consumers.

Report closed until 01-10-2012

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Reports

Attitudes and fish consumption of young people aged 16 to 20: Intervention in Akureyri Young consumer attitudes and fish consumption: Improved image of seafood

Published:

01/02/2009

Authors:

Gunnþórunn Einarsdóttir, Ása Vala Þórisdóttir, Fanney Þórsdóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Emilía Martinsdóttir, Friðrik H. Jónsson, Inga Þórsdóttir

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund: R020-05

contact

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Project Manager

kolbrun.sveinsdottir@matis.is

Attitudes and fish consumption of young people aged 16 to 20: Intervention in Akureyri Young consumer attitudes and fish consumption: Improved image of seafood

1. The aim of the project "Attitudes and fish consumption of young people: Improving the image of seafood" was, among other things, to obtain information on the attitudes and fish consumption of young people. Here is a summary of the results of a participatory study conducted on young people aged 16-20 years. It was examined whether education about fish and more access to it would result in increased fish consumption and more positive attitudes towards fish.

Method and participants: The study was conducted on students from Menntaskólinn á Akureyri and Verkmenntaskólinn á Akureyri who lived on the student parks Lund. The intervention took place in such a way that the number of fish meals in the canteen was increased by half and educational lectures were held for the students where more than 80 students attended (27%) and a presentation was posted on the website. An opinion and consumption survey was prepared in the form of a questionnaire and presented to the students. The same survey was conducted in the fall of 2006 (n = 225, 75%) before the intervention and in the spring of 2007 (n = 220, 73%) after the intervention. The questionnaire was divided into seven sections: 1. Attitudes towards health and food categories; 2. Fish consumption and consumption of various foods; 3. Taste for fish dishes; 4. Factors affecting fish consumption; 5. Prerequisites for fish consumption; 6. External influencers, 7. Knowledge regarding fish.

Results: The intervention resulted in better knowledge of the fish and fish oil consumption increased by almost half and more in girls than boys. Thirty-two percent of students consumed fish oil daily after the intervention but only 22% before the intervention. Furthermore, 38% consumed fish oil 4-7 times a week after the intervention but only 28% before the intervention. On average, the young people ate fish as a main course 1.8 times a week before the intervention and 1.9 times a week after the intervention, but the difference was not significant. The students' fish consumption is therefore not far from the Public Health Institute's recommendations. In terms of incentives for fish consumption, parents were the strongest influencers, but their influence diminished only after intervention. Students' attitudes towards fish became more negative after the intervention, but despite this, their fish consumption did not decrease. Those who did not have fish before the intervention liked it better after the intervention. Targeted education about both healthy fish and an increased supply of diverse fish dishes are necessary to promote increased fish consumption by young people.

The aim of the project “Young consumer attitudes and fish consumption: Improved image of seafood” was to obtain information on the attitudes of young people towards fish and fish consumption. Results are shown from an interventive research which was carried out on young people of the age group 16-20. It was examined if education about fish and its accessibility would result in increased fish consumption and more positive attitudes towards fish. Method and participants: Students from the college and vocational school at Akureyri participated in the study. The intervention was done by doubling the number of fish meals at the school's canteens and informative lectures were given to over 80 students (27%) and information was given on the school web. The students answered a questionnaire on attitudes and consumption of fish. The same study was done twice; in the autumn 2006 (n = 225, 75%) before the intervention and in spring 2007 (n = 220, 73%) after the intervention The questionnaire was divided into 7 parts: 1. Attitudes towards health and food types; 2. Consumption of fish and other foods; Liking of various fish dishes; 4. Factors affecting fish consumption; 5. Prerequisite of fish consumption; 6. External effects; 7. Knowledge about fish. Results: The intervention resulted in better knowledge about fish and the fish liver oil consumption almost doubled, more among girls than boys. Thirty-two percent of the students consumed fish oil daily after the intervention but only 22% before. Further, 38% consumed fish oil 4-7 times a week after the intervention but only 28% before. On average, the young people consumed fish as a main dish 1.8 times a week before the intervention but 1.9 after, the difference was not significant. The fish consumption of the students is therefore not far from the recommendation of the Public Health Institute of Iceland. The parents had the most influence on encouraging increased fish consumption, but their effect decreased a little after the intervention. The attitudes of the students towards fish became more negative after the intervention but did not however decrease their fish consumption. Those who did not like fish before the intervention liked it better after the intervention. Systematic education on the wholesomeness of fish and increased variety of fish dishes are essential to encourage increased fish consumption among young people.

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Reports

Knowledgeable fish consumers: Do consumers benefit from education about quality characteristics and fish handling?

Published:

01/12/2007

Authors:

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Aðalheiður Ólafsdóttir, Hannes Magnússon, Emilia Martinsdóttir

Supported by:

AVS Research Fund

contact

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Project Manager

kolbrun.sveinsdottir@matis.is

Knowledgeable fish consumers: Do consumers benefit from education about quality characteristics and fish handling?

The goal of AVS Knowledgeable Fish Consumers is to prepare guidelines for consumers with general information on quality characteristics and fish handling. The purpose is to improve the public's knowledge of fish, which will hopefully contribute to increased consumption and the increased value of seafood. This report describes the preparation of the instructions and the results of a course held for consumers on how to assess the freshness of fish and an introduction to the content of the instructions. The course was divided into two parts. In the first part, eight consumers received a short lecture on the quality characteristics of cod and how they change during storage. They were trained to evaluate the freshness of raw and boiled cod fillets of different freshness according to rating scales. In the second part of the course, the (same) consumers were asked to rate raw and cooked fillets according to their own taste and also to evaluate freshness. Furthermore, they were asked for suggestions regarding the instructions, the grading scales and whether the content of the course was useful. The results of the course indicated that guidelines of this kind are fully relevant to consumers. The course participants' assessment of raw and cooked fish fillets according to grading scales showed that they were quick to adopt the methods and descriptions given of different raw materials. At the end of the course, the participants in question were more confident in assessing the quality of fish, believing that they would enjoy fish meals better than before and that they would buy fish more often than before. It would be sensible to follow up the project with a larger group of consumers, both to obtain a more reliable assessment of the usefulness of such guidelines, as well as to monitor the long-term impact of this type of information. The annexes to the report provide guidance and a shortened rating scale for consumers to assess the freshness of fish.

The aim of the project Fróðir fiskneytendur (English: Informed fish consumers) is to write guidelines about seafood with general information for consumers about quality attributes and fish handling. The purpose is to increase knowledge about fish in general, which will hopefully result in increased fish consumption and increased value of seafood. This report describes the conception and writing of the guidelines and the results from a workshop on evaluation of fish freshness and fish handling, held for consumers. Eight consumers received a lecture about fish handling and sensory quality of cod. They were trained to evaluate the freshness of raw- and cooked cod fillets of different storage times, using short sensory grading schemes. The consumers were also asked to grade the fillets according to their liking. In addition, the participants were asked for comments on the guidelines and the grading schemes and to evaluate if the topic in the workshop was useful. The results indicated that the guidelines and sensory grading schemes for freshness evaluation were useful for consumers. After the workshop, consumers felt more confident about evaluating fish, thought they would enjoy fish meals more than before and would buy fish more often.

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Reports

Information on fish consumption and buying behavior from fishmongers and restaurants

Published:

01/10/2007

Authors:

Gunnþórunn Einarsdóttir, Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir, Emilia Martinsdóttir

Supported by:

AVS Fisheries Research Fund

contact

Kolbrún Sveinsdóttir

Project Manager

kolbrun.sveinsdottir@matis.is

Information on fish consumption and buying behavior from fishmongers and restaurants

The project "Attitudes and fish consumption of young people: Improving the image of seafood" aims, among other things, to gather information on the attitudes and fish consumption of young people. Questionnaires on various issues concerning fish consumption and young people's buying behavior were submitted to 14 fishmongers and five restaurants in the capital area at the end of 2005. This report summarizes information based on these parties' information and their views on young people's fish consumption. Some of the fishmongers expressed their concern about the tender specifications for the pre-schools and primary schools in Reykjavík, which were later found to be not good enough and clear enough, but it is very important to have clear definitions of what fresh ingredients are. This is important in light of the fact that some fishmongers say they know of examples where parents stop cooking fish at home where their children get it at school. The questions that must then arise are: How is fish in schools? Do the kids eat the fish at school? It seems to be different what people think the fish is expensive. The majority of people find it too expensive and there are examples of it comparing the price of fish with other foods. The fishmongers who have "gourmet fish shops", ie. are almost exclusively with ready-made fish dishes, but say they do not feel that people complain about the price. The people who come to them know what they are doing and are willing to pay for it. From the responses from the restaurants, it is clear that sales of fish dishes have increased over the years. Most fishmongers and restaurant owners agree that all fish and seafood commercials are good.

There is a consensus that fish and other seafood contain nutrients that have a positive effect on public health and consumption should thus be promoted. The overall objective of the project Young consumer attitudes and fish consumption: Improved image of seafood is to find ways to increase seafood consumption. This report discusses a particular survey, which was carried out in the project with the aim of gaining information about the purchasing and consumption behavior, as well as preferences especially of young consumers, with regard to seafood. Fishmongers, restaurateurs and caterers and others who have the occupation of dealing in fish and seafood, are among those believed to possess valuable information about consumer behavior in this respect. In order to tap into this data, a questionnaire was devised and 14 fishmongers, chosen by random selection, were visited and interviewed. The same questionnaire was also used to gain information from randomly selected restaurants that offer seafood, as well as managers at preschool- and compulsory school canteens. The many issues brought up by the questionnaire included purchasing behavior, quality, preferences, pricing etc. Some fishmongers voiced complaints about how Reykjavik City Treasury handled tendering procedures, especially the manner in which tender specification with regard to seafood for preschool- and compulsory school canteens has been carried out. The fishmongers claimed that the tender specifications regarding quality, freshness etc. were incomplete. Following these complaints, an informal investigation into the matter revealed that the criticism had some valid grounds.

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