Numerous meat recalls has led to consumers’ decreased confidence in the safety of the U.S. meat supply. About 34 percent of consumers said they are less confident of meat safety than they were five years ago, according to a survey by Meatingplace magazine.

News coverage of meat recalls has helped bring about "a general distrust of food safety in America," said Irving Rein, a communications professor at Northwestern University. Only 35 percent of consumers surveyed agree that the U.S. government is doing everything it can to ensure meat product safety.

Consumers are mixed on assessing processors' efforts to maintain meat safety with nearly 40 percent of them strongly or somewhat agreeing that meat processors are doing everything possible to safeguard their products. But, about the same number indicated that the industry is not doing enough.

About 36 percent of consumers said they worry about serving fresh ground beef to their families due to concerns about E. coli contamination. Most consumers, however, have not decided to quit buying meat.