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Consumers' health risk-benefit perception of seafood and attitude toward the marine environment: Insights from five European countries
Jacobs, S.; Sioen, I.; Pieniak, Z.; De Henauw, S.; Maulvault, A.L.; Reuver, M.; Fait, G.; Cano-Sancho, G.; Verbeke, W. (2015). Consumers' health risk-benefit perception of seafood and attitude toward the marine environment: Insights from five European countries. Environ. Res. 143(Part B): 11-19.
In: Environmental Research. Elsevier: Amsterdam. ISSN 0013-9351; e-ISSN 1096-0953, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in  Authors 

Author keywords
    Seafood consumption; Risk–benefit perception; Marine environment; Pro-environmental behavior; Cluster analysis

Authors  Top 
  • De Henauw, S., more
  • Maulvault, A.L., more
  • Reuver, M.
  • Fait, G.
  • Cano-Sancho, G.
  • Verbeke, W., more

    This research classifies European consumers into segments based on their health risk–benefit perception related to seafood consumption. The profiling variables of these segments are seafood consumption frequency, general attitude toward consuming fish, confidence in control organizations, attitude toward the marine environment, environmental concern and socio-demographics. A web-based survey was performed in one western European country (Belgium), one northern European country (Ireland) and three southern European countries (Italy, Portugal and Spain), resulting in a total sample of 2824 participants. A cluster analysis was performed based on risk–benefit perception related to seafood and the profiles of the segments were determined by a robust 2-way ANOVA analysis accounting for country effects. Although this study confirms consumers’ positive image of consuming seafood, gradients are found in health risk–benefit perception related to seafood consumption. Seafood consumption frequency is mainly determined by country-related traditions and habits related to seafood rather than by risk–benefit perceptions. Segments with a higher benefit perception, irrespective of their level of risk perception, show a more positive attitude toward consuming seafood and toward the marine environment; moreover, they report a higher concern about the marine environment and have a higher involvement with seafood and with the marine environment. Consequently, information campaigns concentrating on pro-environmental behavior are recommended to raise the involvement with seafood and the marine environment as this is associated with a higher environmental concern. This research underpins that in such information campaigns a nationally differentiated rather than a pan-European or international information strategy should be aimed for because of significant cultural differences between the identified segments.

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