Food Policy Missing From US Presidential Debates, Despite Majority Shopper Interest

636112509008165710courthammer.jpg

05 Oct 2016 --- At a time when Democrats and Republicans agree on few solutions to the challenges facing America, FoodMinds’ fourth “Food Temperance in America” survey found two out of three Opinion Leader Shoppers – registered voters that express their food values in the grocery store, in public forums and in their politics – support including food policy issues in the presidential debates, with 76 percent of Democrat Opinion Leader Shoppers and 50 percent of Republican Opinion Leader Shoppers thinking the presidential candidates should debate policy options around access to food, food assistance programs, food safety and education on healthy food choices. 

There was an uptick among Republican Opinion Leader Shoppers calling for the inclusion of food issues in the debates, with only 42 percent of this group favoring food policy deliberation in 2012, the last time FoodMinds conducted the survey.

While food policy approaches differ between Democrats and Republicans, there has been a significant shift since 2010 in Opinion Leader Shoppers’ thinking about who holds the primary responsibility for making the right food choices to stay healthy and avoid obesity.

Click to Enlarge“Since the FoodMinds Food Temperance Survey was first fielded in January 2010, there has been a steady shift in perceived responsibility away from the individual and toward other parts of society including food companies, government, health care and education,” said Grant Prentice, senior vice president, strategic insights, FoodMinds. “In fact, during this six-year time frame there has been a 15-point change among Opinion Leader Shoppers, with more than 50 percent of such shoppers now believing the primary responsibility for making the right food choices lies with society rather than the individual.” While Republican Opinion Leader Shoppers are more likely to place responsibility on the individual compared to Democrats, the percent of Republicans focused on individual responsibility dropped from 67 percent in 2012 to 59 percent in 2016.

The “Food Temperance in America” survey tracks opinions on food policy topics among registered voters and Opinion Leader Shoppers, a group of politically aware and socially active consumers who are registered voters and primary grocery shoppers for their households.

Not surprisingly, Democrat Opinion Leader Shoppers show much stronger approval for government intervention to limit consumption of unhealthy foods, with 71 percent approving increased intervention relative to only 34 percent of Republicans approving of increased government intervention in food choice and efforts to limit consumption of unhealthy foods.

“It is clear that Republican and Democratic Opinion Leader Shoppers hold different opinions on food policy and these voters want Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump to debate pressing food policy matters during this election. Given the significant difference of opinion on best policies to adopt, it is imperative that the country engage in this debate,” said Bill Layden, founder and executive vice president, FoodMinds.

FoodMinds, a food and nutrition consulting company, keeps its finger-on-the-pulse of Opinion Leader Shoppers to help clients navigate shifts in consumer sentiment that may affect marketing potential.

Led by FoodMinds’ Strategic Insights team, the fourth “Food Temperance in America” survey was conducted using Toluna’s social voting community of more than 10 million people between September 7 and September 15, 2016. The sample of 684 Opinion Leader Shoppers was balanced on age, gender, income and region. The margin of error for Opinion Leader Shoppers is +/- 3.7 percent, Democratic Opinion Leader Shoppers is +/-5.2 percent and Republican Opinion Leader Shoppers is +/-6.8 percent.

To contact our editorial team please email us at editorial@cnsmedia.com

Related Articles

Food Ingredients News

BI Nutraceuticals strengthens Canada presence with Brenntag partnership

15 Feb 2019 --- US-based ingredients supplier BI Nutraceuticals (BI) is partnering with food and nutrition experts Brenntag Canada Inc. to strengthen its reach in Canada. The partnership will allow Brenntag to widen its portfolio to include ingredients that are healthier, natural and on-trend, according to both companies.

Food Ingredients News

Malic acid demand boosts Bartek Ingredients capital investment program

15 Feb 2019 --- Bartek Ingredients Inc., specialized in malic acid, food-grade fumaric acid and maleic anhydride for food and beverage applications, has completed a 4,000 ton/year capacity increase of its malic acid production facilities. The company is planning more investments as part of a series of process and production improvements planned for this year. The capacity expansion also closely follows TorQuest Partners’ acquisition of Bartek Ingredients Inc in November 2018.

Food Ingredients News

Ingredion’s new gum-based texturizers: Single hydrocolloids tap into sugar reduction and sensory trends

14 Feb 2019 --- Ingredion is strengthening its portfolio with the addition of single hydrocolloids which include gum acacia, cellulose gum and tara gum. The texturizers bring a greater breadth of ingredient functionality, including texture stability, emulsification and protein protection, according to the company. With Ingredion’s expertise in recipe formulation, the addition of gums seeks to aid manufacturers to market faster without compromising on mouthfeel.

Business News

IFF reports record-setting sales in “pivotal” Frutarom acquisition year

14 Feb 2019 --- International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. (IFF) has reported that net sales for the full year totaled US$4 billion, an increase of 17 percent from US$3.4 billion in 2017 driven by mid-single digit growth in both Taste and Scent and the contribution of sales related to Frutarom, the biggest acquisition in IFF’s history. For the year, pricing contributed approximately 2 percentage points to growth for both Taste and Scent.

Food Ingredients News

Brexit choking UK food industry: “We can’t cooperate with non-Brexit consultations, it’s not business as usual”

12 Feb 2019 --- The UK food industry has threatened the British Government with breaking off cooperation at this time of “potential crisis” as the countdown to Brexit continues. In an extraordinary move which signals how industry is in full Brexit crisis management mode, business leaders of more than 30 trade organizations within the UK’s farming and food and drink supply-chain, have come together to write a warning letter to Environment Secretary Michael Gove. It says that businesses are now “totally focused on working to mitigate the catastrophic impact of a no-deal Brexit” with large amounts of time, money, people and effort being diverted to that end – and it cannot be “business as usual” within government.

More Articles