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Eating Well Choosing Better Tracker Survey Wave 8 2022

EWCB 2022: Executive Summary

Northern Ireland specific

The Eating Well Choosing Better (EWCB) Tracking Survey monitors Northern Ireland (NI) consumer understanding of healthy eating, knowledge of recommended daily calorie intake, use of traffic-light labels, attitudes towards reformulation and healthier options outside the home. This is the 8th wave of the tracker survey in Northern Ireland.

Last updated: 12 April 2023
Last updated: 12 April 2023
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This survey and report has been conducted and produced by Ipsos on behalf of the FSA. The EWCB tracker survey measures the progress of the FSA’s EWCB programme in NI through the collection of robust consumer insights and the monitoring of this data over time. The survey collects information on consumer perceptions of healthy eating, healthier options and reformulation; consumer use of traffic light labels; and consumer knowledge and understanding of the recommended daily calorie intake. Fieldwork was conducted between 17th September 2022 and 19th November 2022.

Key Findings

  • 91% of participants recognised the traffic light label and 85% reported to understand what traffic light labels are for.
  • 62% of consumers choose foods with healthier traffic light colours always/most times.
  • Around half of those surveyed would be more likely to buy food reduced in saturated fat (51%), sugar (47%), and salt (42%) compared to the regular version.
  • Participants found it difficult to choose healthier food in a range of settings including takeaways (72%), fast-food restaurants (63%), leisure facilities such as cinemas and bowling alleys (63%), restaurants (49%), cafés and sandwich shops (40%) and vending machines (36%).
  • Consumers would like to see healthier options in settings such as takeaways (48%), fast food restaurants (46%), food outlets in leisure facilities (37%), restaurants and bars (33%) and vending machines (28%).
  • 18% of male and 28% of female participants correctly identified the recommended daily calorie intake for their gender.
  • Males and those in a lower socioeconomic group are less likely to find out nutritional information of products; use the traffic light label when shopping for food and want to see increased availability of food lower in saturated fat, sugar and salt.