The recent ‘horse meat scandal’ in Europe has sparked huge concerns among consumers, as horse meat was found in beef lasagne ready to be consumed. Within STARTEC, a European funded project, this study investigates consumers’ preferences, attitudes and willingness to pay (WTP) towards characteristics of ready to heat (RTH) fresh lasagne, including origin of the meat, tested for meat authenticity, safety of the lasagne, and nutritional value, using Discrete Choice Experiments in six countries - Republic of Ireland, France, Italy, Spain, Germany and Norway. Our representative sample of 4,598 European consumers makes this the largest cross country study of this kind. The questionnaire was administered online in January 2014. Results from models in WTP-space show that, on average, consumers are willing to pay considerable amount (about €4-9) for food authenticity; on this Irish and Italian are the least concerned while Spanish are the most concerned. As expected from discussing with stakeholders, food safety claims and nutritional value of the RTH lasagne are relatively less important. Consumers also value knowing the origin of ingredients preferring locally sourced meat. Primarily, the results of this study present strong evidence that consumers in Europe are highly concerned about authenticity of the meat in ready meals and strongly prefer to know that the meat is national. This evidence suggests that there is great value in providing information on these attributes, both from a consumer perspective and where this leads to an increased consumer confidence has benefits for the food industry.
|Publication status||Published - 18 Sep 2015|
|Event||EUROMED Academy of Business Conference - UNIVERSITY OF VERONA - DEPARTMENT OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, Verona, Italy|
Duration: 16 Sep 2015 → 18 Sep 2015
|Conference||EUROMED Academy of Business Conference|
|Period||16/09/2015 → 18/09/2015|