Food irradiation technologies offer benefits in relation to food safety and quality, but consumers hold adverse associations of the irradiation technologies with nuclear energy and radioactivity. Two independent studies (Study 1: N = 600, Study 2: N = 600) were carried out, each involving Finnish, German and Spanish consumers, with the aim of analysing if information on irradiation technologies (Study 1) and the different benefits of low-energy electron beam (LEEB) irradiation technology (Study 2) delivered through a product label affects consumer acceptance of irradiated blueberries. Results from Study 1 show that consumer acceptance is highest with those products which exclude explicit irradiation information on the product label. Results from Study 2 show that the acceptance of products with some benefit of LEEB technology on the product label is higher than those products with no benefit at all. Overall, both studies suggest that consumer acceptance of irradiated foods can be improved through careful introduction of food irradiation information on product labels.
- Food irradiation
- Consumer acceptance
- Low-energy electron beam (LEEB)
- Food labelling