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Japanese consumers’ interpretation of food origin information and their preferences for domestic foods

Nana Sameshima (Graduate School of Humanities and Sciences, Ochanomizu University, Tokyo, Japan)
Rie Akamatsu (Natural Science Division, Faculty of Core Research, Ochanomizu University, Tokyo, Japan)

Nutrition & Food Science

ISSN: 0034-6659

Article publication date: 18 March 2024

Issue publication date: 10 April 2024

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Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to determine the extent to which consumers perceive food-related information to be tied to the intrinsic characteristics of food, particularly safety.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors examined Japanese consumers’ preferences regarding domestic or foreign perishables, as well as how they interpret origin information, focusing on their perceptions of safety using descriptive analysis and binary logistic regression analysis.

Findings

The results indicated that a high proportion of Japanese consumers considered domestic foods to be safer; in particular, people affected by food safety information obtained through personal communication, books and magazines tended to choose domestically produced perishables rather than imported ones.

Originality/value

The belief that domestic foods are safer than imported ones was highly universal among Japanese consumers, although this belief is not necessarily grounded in scientific evidence. When considering strategies to improve consumers’ information literacy, factors that have fostered this belief must be discussed. For consumers to make logical food choices, both food businesses and consumers require scientific and informational literacy and policy support.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

Statements and declarations.

Funding: We did not receive any specific grants from funding agencies in the public, commercial or non-profit sectors.

Data availability statement: The data for this secondary analysis, derived from the Survey on Japanese Dietary Habits 2016, which was conducted by the NHK Broadcasting Culture Research Institute, were provided by the Social Science Japan Data Archive of the Center for Social Research and Data Archives, which is part of the Institute of Social Sciences at the University of Tokyo.

Declaration of competing interests: We declare no known competing financial interests or personal relationships that could have influenced the work reported in this paper.

Ethical approval: This study provides an analysis of deposited data available for secondary academic use, and the Humanities and Social Sciences Research Ethics Committee of Ochanomizu University has confirmed that no ethical approval is required.

Citation

Sameshima, N. and Akamatsu, R. (2024), "Japanese consumers’ interpretation of food origin information and their preferences for domestic foods", Nutrition & Food Science, Vol. 54 No. 3, pp. 650-662. https://doi.org/10.1108/NFS-07-2023-0146

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2024, Emerald Publishing Limited

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