Business information needs (February - March 2015)

This research aimed to understand business’ awareness of available information, perceived relevance and appeal of information, impact of materials currently used, format and channel preferences for guidance and identify any gaps in existing support and priorities for alteration.
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This research found that, despite the high positivity around the range of support and guidance materials provided by the FSA, awareness that these are from the FSA is fairly low. We are not top-of-mind as an information source and so materials are not often proactively sought out, which means that overall materials need to be pushed to food businesses (FBOs) proactively – likely through intermediaries such as local authorities. However, the positive reception of our materials suggests there is a key opportunity to use materials to educate businesses about our role and purpose, and to build productive relationships.

One prevalent problem with business’ current experience is that information often reaches FBOs too late. It will be useful to ensure that materials get to FBOs early in their business journey – when habits are still being established. However, inspection points and new business development should also be recognised as key influence points where FBOs may be more receptive to guidance and support.