Americans remain focused on economic issues, which top their list of concerns, according to the most recent consumer survey by the Center for Food Integrity.  The U.S. economy, rising energy, food and health-care costs, as well as personal financial situation were rated the highest level of concern among 11 current issues. Global warming received the lowest rating.  (See poll results below)

“The top five issues each had a mean score above 8 on a scoring scale of 0 to 10, which indicates a very high level of concern on a national survey,” says Jan Wilson of Gestalt Research, which conducted the survey for CFI. More than 2,000 consumers responded to the national survey conducted in August and September.

For the second consecutive year, food safety was the highest rated non-economic issue. It again rated higher than consumer concern over military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. 

“This is consistent with the results of our national focus group research in April,” notes Terry Fleck, CFI executive director. “Consumers told us their priorities are food that is safe, affordable and nutritious. The number and frequency of high-profile food safety incidents over the past several years results in heightened consumer awareness.”

Complete survey results will be released at the CFI 2009 Food System Summit, Oct. 6-7, in Kansas City, Mo. The Summit is open to the public. For registration information, click here.

Issue

Mean

The U.S. Economy

8.44

Rising Energy Costs

8.29

Rising Cost of Food

8.23

Rising Health Care Costs

8.21

Personal Financial Situation

8.04

Food Safety

7.67

U.S. military involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan

7.22

Access to accurate information to make healthy food choices

6.60

Humane treatment of farm animals

6.43

Obesity in America

6.37

Global warming

6.05

A total of 2018 consumer surveys (sampling error at 95 percent confidence level +/- 2.2%) were collected via a Web survey in August and September of 2009.

Source: Center for Food Integrity