According to a survey by the Center for Food Integrity, U.S. consumers are more concerned about food safety than the war in Iraq or global warming.
That may come as a surprise, but it also may be a reflection of what seem to be increasing food-safety mishaps that have reported in the news in the last year to 18 months. In late August, several children became sick, some dying, as a food safety issue was traced back to a restaurant in Utah. The ranking may also reflect factors that more directly impact people's daily lives-- food safety versus a war thousands of miles away.
In CFL's Consumer Trust Survey, respondents rated how worried they were about several issues, rating them on a scale of 0 (not concerned) to 10 (very concerned). In the end, the survey showed that respondents were more worried about food safety than war, immigration issues, global warming and humane-animal-handling issues.
However, true to form, participating consumers were less worried about food safety, than the rising prices that they're facing across all goods and services. That further verifies the theory that "what impacts me" tends to get the higher rankings.
The survey involved more than 2,000 respondents nationwide.
Respondents were also asked to react to 24 statements about the food system. Less than 20 percent strongly agreed that government agencies are doing a good job of ensuring the safety of the U.S. food supply.
Clearly there is more work to do in the realm of food safety assurance and education.