New research published by Arla Foods has uncovered a significant knowledge gap when it comes to consumers’ understanding of food, with almost half of respondents not recognising dairy products as a natural source of vitamins and minerals.
The study, which was conducted by YouGov, used insights from more than 7,000 people from Denmark, Sweden, Germany, Finland and the UK.
Around a quarter of respondents said they skip a meal, even though they are hungry, with 37% of this group citing saving time as the most common reason.
The findings highlight that despite more people wanting to lead a healthier life, there exists an uncertainty when it comes to knowing exactly what to consume.
Arla Foods CMO Hanne Søndergaard said: “It’s clear from the research that there is still a lot to educate consumers on when it comes to nutrition. The demand to live healthier lives is constantly increasing yet we can only do this when we truly understand our food and the impact that food has on our body.
“Food literacy needs to be improved so people can compose meals which are rich and varied in essential nutrients. Establishing good food habits is the foundation of what we at Arla stand for to help people across the world live a healthy life.
“Consumers are constantly demanding new experiences from their food and new trends are emerging all the time. Our vision is firmly rooted in bringing the nutritional benefits of milk into exciting concepts that meet these demands and ultimately help them understand how dairy can be part of a balanced and healthy lifestyle.”
When it comes to how the countries stack up, two in three Britons wrongly think there is more than 10% fat in whole milk, when actually it only contains under 4%. In Finland, more than a third believe the fat content in milk to be more than 10%.
Food confusion is prevalent across European countries, with three-quarters of people in Sweden not recognising dairy products as a source of protein, according to the study. For Germans, a quarter only eat one main meal a day, highlighting why almost half of the nation might feel they may be lacking in key vitamins and nutrients.
A common theme across respondents is the desire to reduce the amount of sugar. A third of people across Denmark, Sweden, Finland, the UK and Germany admit to cutting out a specific food, with 40% of those saying they aim to omit sugar from what they eat.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2022
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