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Inclusion of Food Safety Information in Home-delivered U.K. Meal-kit Recipes

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posted on 2023-10-02, 10:23 authored by Naomi Melville, Elizabeth RedmondElizabeth Redmond, Joseph Baldwin, Ellen W. Evans

Home-delivered meal-kit recipe boxes provide consumers with fresh, measured ingredients requiring storage, preparation, and cooking by following a recipe card. Previous literature has suggested that including food safety information within recipes may positively impact behavior. Therefore, there is a need to better understand what food safety information is included on the meal-kit recipe cards. Content analysis was performed on U.K. meal-kit provider recipe cards (n = 359) obtained using citizen science methods. Although 46% of recipes referred to handwashing at the start of recipe preparation, these stated ‘wash hands’ with no further advice regarding hand hygiene, and half (48%) did not refer to handwashing during recipe preparation. Most recipes included produce (99%) and referred to washing fruit and vegetables (88%). For meal-kits that provided animal proteins (n = 332), 50% referred to storing ingredients in the fridge, and only one recipe referred to recommended temperatures (≤5°C). Where applicable (n = 346), food safety advice to prevent cross-contamination was present in 51% of recipes. Statements concerning cooking adequacy of animal proteins (n = 1306) included subjective cooking guidance, with 35% referring to visual assessment of color and 26% cooking duration. For best practice food safety guidance, two recipes referred to end-point temperature, and one stated to use a temperature probe. While all meal-kit providers provided some food safety-related information in reviewed recipes, information was often not sufficient to inform consumers about food safety risk-reducing behaviors in the domestic setting. Observational research is needed to understand consumer engagement with how food safety information in meal-kit recipes impacts the behavior of consumers.





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Melville, N., Redmond, E.C., Baldwin, J.E. and Evans, E.W. (2023) 'Inclusion of Food Safety Information in Home-delivered U.K. Meal-kit Recipes', Journal of Food Protection. doi: 10.1016/j.jfp.2023.100162

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Cardiff Met Affiliation

  • Cardiff School of Sport and Health Sciences

Cardiff Met Authors

Naomi Melville Elizabeth Redmond Joseph E.B. Baldwin Ellen W. Evans

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  • © The Authors


  • en

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