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Development of a safe food handling knowledge questionnaire: psychometric properties and acceptability among consumers

Jessica Charlesworth (Faculty of Health Sciences, enAble Institute, Curtin University, Perth, Australia)
Barbara Mullan (Faculty of Health Sciences, Western Australian Cancer Prevention Research Unit, Curtin University, Perth, Australia and Faculty of Health Sciences, enAble Institute, Curtin University, Perth, Australia)
David Preece (Faculty of Health Sciences, enAble Institute, Curtin University, Perth, Australia)

Nutrition & Food Science

ISSN: 0034-6659

Article publication date: 7 April 2022

Issue publication date: 2 January 2023

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Abstract

Purpose

Foodborne illness remains high globally, with the majority of cases occurring in the domestic environment. Research in the safe food-handling domain is limited by the absence of an up-to-date and suitable measure of safe food-handling knowledge for use among consumers, with previous measures limited by questionnaire design features that increase participant burden and burnout and a lack of alignment with current safe food-handling guidelines. The purpose of this study is to develop a safe food-handling knowledge measure to capture a comprehensive understanding of consumers’ safe food-handling knowledge while minimising participant burden and burnout.

Design/methodology/approach

Items were developed and evaluated prior to administering them to participants. Data was collected among 277 participants who completed the measure online.

Findings

Results indicated that the measure had good acceptability among participants in the sample (mean = 5.44, SD = 0.77, range = 2.42–7) and that the measure had acceptable reliability (Cronbach’s α = 0.60), item discrimination and item difficulty. These findings suggest that the safe food-handling knowledge measure would be suitable for use in future studies examining consumer safe food-handling.

Originality/value

This study provides an updated, acceptable and suitable safe food-handling knowledge measure for use among consumers to better understand consumers’ understanding of safe food-handling practices. Use of this measure in future research can improve the measurement of consumer safe food-handling knowledge to allow for better tailoring of future interventions and health campaigns for safe food-handling among consumers.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge and thank the Australian Government for the support provided through the Stipend Scholarship program for Higher Degree by Research students.

Funding: This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

Citation

Charlesworth, J., Mullan, B. and Preece, D. (2023), "Development of a safe food handling knowledge questionnaire: psychometric properties and acceptability among consumers", Nutrition & Food Science, Vol. 53 No. 1, pp. 1-18. https://doi.org/10.1108/NFS-12-2021-0365

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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