GLOBAL – Food safety is a major issue for society. This is according to a recent study conducted by Tetra Pak, a leading manufacturer of food processing equipment, in partnership with global survey company Ipsos.

According to the study, 77% of respondents said that they considered food safety to be a major issue for society and further believed that COVID-19 is a “real threat.”

The Tetra Pak research further revealed that health is deeply connected to heightened issues of food safety and hygiene.

Two-thirds of consumers sayed that being healthy is being safe and 60% of consumers globally saying they worry about the food they buy being hygienic and safe.

At the same time, the survey revealed that concern for the environment among consumers remains strikingly powerful.

This point towards a dilemma in the consumers’ minds as they try to balance the critical priorities of human existence through safe food and sustainability of the planet we live on.

Tetra Pak says that consumers cite food waste reduction as both the number one environmental issue they can influence themselves and one of the top three priorities for manufacturers.

It however noted that confusing labelling is often a barrier adding that the current status quo offered brands a chance to improve on their communication.

Meanwhile, the Tetra Pak Index, in its 13th edition, has seen a 10% increase in global concern about food safety and future food supplies, now at 40%, compared to 30% from 2019.

 In addition, more than 50% of consumers not only believe that improving food safety is the responsibility of manufacturers, they see it as the number one issue that companies need to tackle now and in the future.

When asked what is key for them in a package, consumers indicate that ensuring food safety is its main purpose.

They also expressed concerns about environmental innovations in packaging impacting food safety, even though the majority of respondents indicate ‘using sustainable packaging’ as one of the top issues food and beverage brands need to tackle – today and tomorrow.

In his remarks, Adolfo Orive, President and CEO, Tetra Pak, said: “The [Food] industry needs to address the growing dilemma around food safety and the environment, stepping up towards the twin goals of meeting the human need for food while protecting our planet’s ecosystem.”

“This is where food packaging can play a strong role in bringing about harmony,” Orive added.

Tetra Pak sees close collaboration among stake holders in the food industry is the ultimate answer to consumer consumers about food safety and the environment.

“Working closely with our customers and stakeholders, we are already on a journey to create the ultimate sustainable food package – a carton package that is made solely from responsibly sourced renewable or recycled materials,” Tetra Pak said.

“We see this as a critical step in building a sustainable future for the next generation, especially in the aftermath of COVID-19.”

Liked this article? Subscribe to Food Business Africa News, our regular email newsletters with the latest news insights from Africa and the World’s food and agro industry. SUBSCRIBE HERE