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Food Pillory has been running for 5 years, research shows immense trust of consumers

08/22/2017
 

The Czech Agriculture and Food Inspection Authority (CAFIA) launched project Food Pillory in summer 2012 and 3,714 non-compliant lots were released here since then. Out of this number, 1,558 have been categorised as unsafe, 1,207 as adulterated and 949 as of poor-quality. It is a first public database of inspection detections released by a Czech supervisory authority. Due to its detailed information, promptness and the amount of communication channels, it is a unique project on a European-wide scale so far.

During 5 years, the project proved that provision of information and protection of consumers as well as fair business persons is effective. Due to this application, all important information could be easily and clearly found on one place,” Minister of Agriculture, Marian Jurečka, said.

Food Pillory became a natural constituent and a stable part of the food market,” CAFIA Director General, Martin Klanica, added.

The research made among 2,209 users of the Food Pillory confirmed that 99% of respondents regard the information as trustworthy (71% entirely, 28% more likely) and 99 % of respondents regard it as useful (75% as very useful, 24 % more likely useful).

The research further showed that the Food Pillory changes consumers’ purchasing behaviour. 86% of respondents confessed that information on the FP had impact on their purchase and 42% of respondents said that the FP had an impact on their choice when going to a public catering restaurant.

According to 96% of participants, the Food Pillory increases the awareness of domestic consumers who may thus protect themselves and not to purchase unsafe or poor-quality foodstuffs. Based on well-founded information, they can make responsible decisions concerning for example their health. The total of 95% of questioned persons, this information personally helps to avoid poor-quality, unsafe or adulterated foodstuffs present on the market and 93% of respondents are of the opinion that the Food Pillory increases the awareness of Czech consumers who may thus protect themselves against going to low level public catering premises.

84% of respondents think that releasing information of inspection results make an effective pressure on dishonest producers, sellers or public catering operators and they rather abandon such dishonest conduct.

The Food Pillory project launched in 2012 has been extended to present 6 communication channels. Information from the Food Pillory could be received by e-mail in the form of a weekly newsletter. Since 2013 consumers can download mobile applications for Android, iOS and Windows, which, inter alia, enable to send a suggestion for an inspection directly from the premises. No less than 70,000 users have installed this application so far. With the aim to approach in particular young people and people with risky behaviour, CAFIA launched its account on social media where stylistic and graphic forms of information comply with expectations of this socio-demographic group. Since 2014 consumers may follow the Food Pillory on Facebook and Twitter and since 2016 also on Instagram.

The Food Pillory extends the amount of information provided on a regular basis. In 2013 section Thematic Inspections with results of inspection activities containing also information of compliant foodstuffs was established. Since 2015 consumers can find also information on closed premises (public catering, retail, wholesale and further) associated with extension of CAFIA competencies. 497 premises were concerned by the half of this year, in particularly due to serious hygiene deficiencies. In the previous year, the State Veterinary Administration of the Czech Republic joined the project as well and has been releasing its inspection results in the field of foodstuffs too.

The public supported the Food Pillory by a range of awards. Particularly the price of the Czech Internet Czech Magnifying Glass is concerned – it is the award that the project was awarded in 2012, 2013 and 2015 in the Publicly Useful Service category. In 2014, the Food Pillory was awarded by the Mobile Application of the Year in the Application for Better World category. The public, not an expert jury, decided on the awards in all cases. The number of visitors already exceeded number 4,300,000 so far.

 

Article by: Pavel Kopřiva, CAFIA Spokesperson

22nd August 2017