Cold chain and consumers’ practices: exploratory results of focus group interviews

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Stefania Balzan *
Luca Fasolato
Barbara Cardazzo
Giulia Berti
Enrico Novelli
(*) Corresponding Author:
Stefania Balzan |


The aim of this qualitative survey was to gain an insight into the ways consumers purchase, transport and storage fresh and frozen food. In particular, this paper considered consumers’ behaviour and the knowledge they have about cold chain. An explorative study was held using focus group interviews (n. 4) as the method for data collection. The sampling group was composed of 24 consumers (4 males and 20 females) and the age ranged from 33 to 78. Data revealed that food safety knowledge is at a fairly good level, however consumer practices in certain cases were inappropriate particularly with respect to transport from the store to home, storage and thaw. Consumers were particularly concerned about frozen food that should not be thawed during shopping or transportation. Knowledge about eggs storage seemed to be dodgy as well. Due to the restricted extent of the sample survey the results cannot be generalized to the whole Italian population; still, this method is particularly useful for discovering not only what people think but why they think that way.

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