The Cattle Network posted a brief analysis of a study conducted by Harris Interactive between April 10 and April 16 – weeks before a number of E. coli outbreaks caused the recall of millions of pounds of ground beef.  The study showed that of 79 percent of consumers surveyed online, 86 percent are aware of food product recalls, and 29 percent believe that food product recalls are a serious concern. 

The poll also demonstrated that consumers especially attuned to recalls attributed to health or safety concerns, with 55 percent saying they would at least temporarily purchase another brand and 15 percent saying they would permanently switch brands.

Also noteworthy were consumers’ varying levels of familiarity with six product recalls that occurred in the past 8 months that were measured in the study. Along with varying familiarity levels, the actual number of consumers able to name the brands involved in the recalls drops considerably.

For example, only 20 percent indicated they were familiar with a nationwide recall of chicken contaminated by Listeria monocytogenes. And of those familiar with the recall, only two percent were able to name the correct brand involved. Meantime, 17 percent named other industry brands not associated with the chicken recall.