Canadians demand action to ensure food safety
Beacon Staff Reporter
A new poll released by the Canadian Food Safety Alliance on Tuesday showed that Canadians’ concern for food borne illness has persisted, months after the XL Food recall.
Canadians list food safety as one of their top concerns on par with concerns over the deficit. The poll by Praxicus was commissioned by Canadian Food Safety Alliance and conducted between November 20 and 22 and included a sample of 1000 Adult Canadian citizens. The margin of error is +/- 3.1 per cent.
The survey also found that Canadians demand action when it comes to ensuring the food offered is safe, citing an increase in inspectors and the vaccination of all cattle to prevent them from carrying E. coli O157 as priorities for fighting food borne illness.
While the vast majority of Canadians are still either recorded as confident or somewhat confident in Canadian meat safety, concerns over issues such as E. coli O157 contamination remain a priority for the majority.
“This survey was done long after the massive beef recall and Canadians remain concerned about their food safety,” Canadian Food Alliance spokesperson Bliss Baker said.
“It certainly seems that Canadians want to see more done to protect the safety of their food,” Baker added.
Some of the highlights of the poll include food safety as topical and an issue of great importance, the importance of dealing with the issue trumps all other issues, including the deficit.
E. coli contamination trumps all food safety issues, as half of Canadians believe E. coli incidents have increased over 5 years and 42 per cent of Canadians say they have decreased beef consumption as a result of concerns.
The survey showed that Processors and Meat inspectors as mainly (equally) responsible for the E. coli outbreak. Eleven per cent of the respondents believed that the CFIA were doing “everything they can” compared to 15 per cent who believed that they were “not doing enough.”
Processing plants and big box/discount retailers are seen as the most likely places to purchase E. coli contaminated beef whereas local butchers and organic beef were seemed to be the least likely sources of E. coli contaminated beef.
The Canadian Food Safety Alliance is committed to protecting the public health by promoting a prevention program that reduces the human health risks associated with E. coli O157 contamination.