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Open Access
Article
Publication date: 28 January 2022

Jana Olivia Dreyer, Silke Lichtenstein and Eleonore A. Heil

The purpose of this study is to investigate what consumers think about food waste, best before date (BBD) and appreciation of food in the context of a model project in the…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate what consumers think about food waste, best before date (BBD) and appreciation of food in the context of a model project in the food-retailing sector. The focus was on the following key questions: How is the issue of food waste itself perceived by consumers? What understanding of the BBD was present in the sample and what do consumers imagine under the term appreciation in the context of food? The study also included an evaluation of the acceptance of the model project by customers. In this project, food no longer suitable for sale was distributed free of charge to visitors of a supermarket via a freely accessible refrigerator.

Design/methodology/approach

The research design was based on a mixed methods approach in an explorative sequential design. First a qualitative survey was conducted via interviews (n = 8) with customers, and the results were used for a subsequent quantitative survey (n = 88) in the supermarket.

Findings

The majority of those questioned were sensitized to the topics of food waste, BBD and appreciation of food. The results of the interviews and the questionnaires revealed a consistently positive opinion about the model project. These results indicate potential for reducing food losses among consumers and in food retailing and for improving appreciation.

Originality/value

This was the first study conducted as part of a model project in the retail sector in the context of food waste. The study also investigated within in the project what people think about the BBD, food losses and appreciation. At the same time, the acceptance of the project was assessed.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 124 no. 13
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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