Food labelling in Malawi and Sabah,Malaysia: Consumer, industry and legislation perspectives

William Kasapila, (2013) Food labelling in Malawi and Sabah,Malaysia: Consumer, industry and legislation perspectives. PhD thesis, Universiti Malaysia Sabah.

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Abstract

This study aimed to describe legislation that govern labelling of food information on pre-packaged foodstuffs in Lilongwe and Blantyre (Malawi) and Kota Kinabalu in Sabah (Malaysia), and investigate industry and consumer practices to identify areas for improvement. Data were collected from November 2010 through March 2012. This involved a random survey of 2583 consumers and 2713 food products, .and interviews with food experts. Consumers were approached and interviewed after they checked out at supermarkets. Shop managers gave their consent to conduct the consumer survey outside the shops to avoid affecting customer behaviour and revenues. A series of food categories were purchased and surveyed to capture relevant packaging data for further analysis and interpretation. The results of the study showed that 76.5% of the products surveyed carried nutrition information (68.6% for Malawi and 90.2% for Sabah), while 20.7% and 39% displayed nutrition and health claims, respectively. Compliance rates with Codex requirements for nutrition labelling and use of claims on products also varied Significantly between the two countries, with Malawi comparing unfavourably. Such differences were also observed in the consumer survey. For example, self-reported use of nutrition labels was 70.8% for Sabah and 40.5% in Malawi. However, only 13.7% of the respondents had numerical ability to interpret the nutrition labels correctly in these countries. This meant that the majority of consumers read labels without understanding them. Results from principal components analyses showed that three main factors influenced consumers to use food nutrition labels, namely the marketing environment, nutrition knowledge, and product attributes. The study developed a conceptual model to put these factors into perspective that if well applied can help healthcare practitioners in the formulation of evidence-based plans and policies for nutrition. The research already established that food experts in the study countries valued and viewed food labelling as a viable way to ensure healthful diets.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Uncontrolled Keywords:food information, pre-packaged foodstuffs, labelling
Subjects:T Technology > TP Chemical technology > TP368-456 Food processing and manufacture
Divisions:SCHOOL > School of Food Science and Nutrition
ID Code:11795
Deposited By:IR Admin
Deposited On:15 Oct 2015 16:40
Last Modified:15 Oct 2015 16:40

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