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Abstract

It is not yet understood whether the implementation of traceability systems can contribute towards restoring consumer confidence in food quality and safety, one of the goals of the European Food Law. To date, little is known about how consumers perceive the role and potential impact of traceability within the supply chain. This paper aims to provide insight into how traceability information can offer guarantees of food quality and safety, and contribute towards increased consumer confidence. Data, collected in four EU countries, examines salient cognitions and attitudes that underpin consumer beliefs about product traceability that will influence their decision making. It will link traceability- related food attributes to perceived benefits (in terms of quality and safety) and important consumer values. Furthermore, variations between different consumer s are examined to illustrate how the concepts of food safety and food quality may have different meanings and consequences in the various European countries. Understanding which benefits consumer s associate with traceability will assist in providing consumers with traceability information in line with their requirement s.

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