British consumers ignore labels on treats and staples

October 2, 2008

A British Food Standards Agency study found that many consumers ignore nutrition labeling when buying “indulgence” items or basic ingredients.

The study found that consumers tend to ignore nutrition information on desserts and other items they buy knowing they are unhealthy, but wanting to treat themselves. They also ignore label information on basic items such as flour and butter, because they consider these items as necessary regardless of the nutritional value.

The agency also said that for those who did consider label information when purchasing items, they often didn’t consider total fat content and other nutritional issues when combining those individual items to make a meal.

The agency created a group of experts to determine the influence of different food labeling schemes in order to find one system that has the most impact on consumer decisions.

BBC Report