UK ranks high in EU meat study
Published:  14 June, 2013

The UK was in the top five scoring countries for meat and meat products in a European Commission study measuring the goods and services markets in the EU.

The EU meat market came 17 out of 19 in the overall ranking of goods markets according to the study, which questioned 13,477 consumers in 27 EU countries. Results from the study are used to rank markets according to their performance and will be used to analyse which aspects of the meat market do not function well for consumers.

Areas such as choice, quality, safety, health and sustainability are looked at, among other important issues. Findings will be used to inform general consumer policy in the meat industry, with particular focus on any action needed to be taken, regarding the information. Findings can also be used as guidance when looking at policy areas, such as food waste or origin labelling.

Information gathered from the survey also showed that factors affecting meat purchasing included how meat looked, with 10.2% of people buying meat because of how fresh it looked, while 8.1% made a purchasing decision based on the price of meat, with 7.9% using country of origin as a deal sealer.

Attributes most looked for when buying meat

When consumers were asked if they would like to change their meat purchasing behaviour, 68% said they would like to buy at least one specific type of meat more often.

The survey also showed that when consumers were asked if they would like to buy meat less often, 32% said yes. The most common reason, the survey suggested, was because of nutrition or health reasons (54%) or because it was too expensive (34%).

Prefer to buy more of

Meanwhile, when asked why they did not buy the types of meat they wanted to more often, the most common answer was that it was too expensive. Other factors informing customers’ decisions were lack of choice or poor availability of fresh meats.

When asked about how much meat they wasted, 23% said they had thrown away edible parts of meat or meat products in the past month. The main reason for throwing away meat, the survey said, was because it was past its ‘use by’ or ‘best before’ date (31%), while 18% said they had cooked or prepared too much.

Meat purchasing channels

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