Vol. 75 No. 1 (2020)
Articles

Consumers are unaware about European legislation on communication of the health benefits conveyed by claims. An empirical survey

Antonella Di Fonzo
University of Cassino and Southern Lazio
Claudio Liberati
CREA - Research Centre for Agricultural Policies and Bioeconomy
Published June 11, 2020
Keywords
  • functional food,
  • regulation,
  • health claims,
  • credence goods,
  • food choice
How to Cite
Di Fonzo, A., & Liberati, C. (2020). Consumers are unaware about European legislation on communication of the health benefits conveyed by claims. An empirical survey. Italian Review of Agricultural Economics, 75(1), 51-59. https://doi.org/10.13128/rea-11742

Abstract

This paper investigates how consumers knowledge of the EC list (reg. (EU) 432/2012) can affect their understanding of health claims (HC). Despite the existence of a rigorous regulation on the communication of health benefits attributed to functional foods (reg. (EC) 1924/2006), there are still doubts about the efficacy of legislation. In fact, the information conveyed by HC does not always reach the consumer in a clear and understandable way, making the consumer skeptical. This paper proposes an empirical analysis to verify if this effect could be mitigated in case that the consumer knew the European register of HC. The results show how consumers skepticism is linked to trust and assessment problems that contribute to limit the HC efficacy and provide new elements to improve the health benefits regulation.

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