Consumer Awareness and Attitude on Radiocesium Food Contamination Following Fukushima Incident
Hiromi Hosono, Yuko Kumagai, and Tsutomu Sekizaki
Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, The University of Tokyo, 1-1-1 Yayoi, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8657, Japan
Concerns about radioactive contamination are spreading among consumers after the nuclear power plant incident at Fukushima, Japan in 2011. This study is an attempt to understand how Japanese consumer recognize the risk of radioactive substances in food based on web-based-questionnaire conducted in October 2011, March 2012, and January 2013. Results showedmixed awareness both willing to support radiation-affected areas and willing to avoid the risk of radioactive substances. And deteriorating trust on the radioactive substance management by the stakeholders, and insufficient information provided on risk and management of radioactive substances also were indicated. Among the respondents, those revealed higher satisfaction about risk management measures showed the lower perceived level of risk and their knowledge level were higher.
-  S. Kurihara, A. Maruyama, and A. E. Luloff, “Analysis of Consumer Behavior in the TokyoMetropolitan Area after the Great East Japan Earthquake,” Journal of Food System Research, Vol.18. No.4, pp. 415-426, 2012.
-  K. Ujiie, “Consumer’s Evaluation on Radioactive Contamination of Agricultural Products in Japan – Decomposition ofWTA into a Part Due to Radioactive Contamination anda Part Due to Area of Origin –,” Journal of Food System Research, Vol.19, No.2, pp. 142-155, 2012 (in Japanese).
-  H. Hosono, Y. Kumagai, and T. Sekizaki, “How do Japanese Consumers Perceive Radiation Risks in Foods?: A Result ofWeb-based Questionnaire Regarding Beef,” Japanese Journal of Risk Analysis, Vol.22, No.4 (in press, in Japanese).
-  The Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare of Japan, “Information on the Great East Japan Earthquake,”
http://www.mhlw.go.jp/english/topics/2011eq/index.html [accessed April 6, 2013]
-  Tokyo Metropolitan Central Wholesale Market, “Iinformation on the transaction,”
http://www.shijou.metro.tokyo.jp/torihiki/index.html (in Japanese) [accessed April 6, 2013]
-  The Food Safety Commission, “Consumer survey on fod safety concerns,” in August, 2012,
http://www.fsc.go.jp/monitor/index.html (in Japanese) [accessed April 6, 2013]
-  Y. Kito, “Analysis of public’s perception for health effect of radioactive substances byWeb survey,” Agriculture and economics, Vol.78, No.1, pp. 18-29, 2012 (in Japanese).
-  K. Kuriyama, “Consumer behavior of buying foods will be contaminated radioactive substances from Analysis the option experiment,” Agriculture and economics, Vol.78, No.1, pp. 30-38, 2012 (in Japanese).
-  Web site of Research Center for Food Safety, the University of Tokyo,
http://www.frc.a.u-tokyo.ac.jp/event/radioactive/radioactive.html [accessed April 6, 2013]
-  A. Irwin and B. Wynne, “Misunderstanding science,” Cambridge University Press, 1996.
-  J. Ziman, “Public understanding of science,” Science, Technology and Human Values, Vol.16, pp. 99-105. 1991.
-  A. M. Dijkstra and J. M. Gutteling, “Communicative aspects of the public-science relationship explored: Results of focus group discussion about biotechnology and genomics,” Science Communication, Vol.34, No.3, pp. 363-391, 2012.
This article is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 Internationa License.