Americans still confident in our food supply

Even with the number of major recalls in recent years, many U.S. consumers remain confident in domestically produced food, including fresh produce, but more than 50 percent are wary of imported food and unsure about our food inspection system, according to a recent study, reports The Packer.   These findings are based on results from a study conducted between May 12 and June 1 by a research group at the Harvard School of Public Health, focussed on public and biological security. A survey of 1,500 people, done before the tomato salmonella outbreak, was to understand Americans’ perception of food threats to the public. The survey found that 37 percent of respondents believe U.S.-produced food is very safe, 58 percent believe it is somewhat safe and only 4 percent think it is unsafe. Only 6 percent believe food from Canada is unsafe, but 47 percent consider food from Mexico unsafe and 56 percent have reservations about food from China. Some 53 percent of those polled look for information about product origin. Moving forward, Robert Blendon, professor of health policy and political analysis at Harvard, said he believes more consumers will be requesting country-of-origin labels on food, and there will be a strengthened demand for the FDA to bulk up its inspection process and provide the public with more immediate information following an outbreak.