Food Trends / Wellness Foods

United Soybean Board Unveils Consumer Attitudes About Nutrition Study

The United Soybean Board's 17th Annual Consumer Attitudes about Nutrition study debuted at the Institute of Food Technologists meeting expo in July.

The highlights of the study included:

Consumers See Soy as Healthy, Especially for the Heart
  • 84 percent of consumers believe soy products are healthy, with very few rating them as unhealthy. This is on par with past years.
  • More people are aware of specific health benefits of soy (31 percent in 2009 to 35 percent in 2010) with a noticeable increase in heart health awareness.
Opinions on Fats and Oils
  • 37 percent of consumers think saturated fats are healthier than trans fat, in line with prior years. 
  • 45 percent of consumers continue to say they don't know which type of fat is healthiest 
  • 85 percent of consumers think soybean oil is very or somewhat healthy. This suggests product development opportunities, as consumers continue to do more at-home eating and entertaining in 2010.
  • 60 percent of consumers consider margarine with a "heart health" claim to be healthier than butter.
Consumers Show Familiarity and Acceptance of Agricultural Biotechnology
  • 41 percent of consumers are familiar with the term biotechnology, on par with previous years. Half of those familiar with biotechnology view its role in food production very to somewhat positively.
  • One-quarter of consumers indicate they are aware of the health and nutrition benefits that result from biotechnology, up slightly from 2009, but on par with previous years. Increased nutritional value, larger crop yields and more vitamins/minerals in foods continue to be the most common benefits cited by these consumers. 

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