Food scare in Europe Western Europe has experience has experienced one of several significant food scare. This is because of the socio-economic as well as cultural factors and the media involvement in incitement of customers thus raising public anxiety over food control prices and other economic aspects related to food processing and supply. This has instilled negative behaviour in customer consumption thus posing a negative effect on food manufacturers and producers. Food safety information was being provided by scientific organization, activist groups such as PETA, WSPA and RSPCA, journalists and other government bodies.
As a result, many people were informed of the food crisis in the continent. Development of the European food surveillance networks came to the aid of food scare situation by introducing voluntary surveillance systems. This led to the commitment of citizens in helping to counter the food scare situation. An example of this system is the Enter-net system which is used to monitor electric infections (Knowles, T. et al, 44). The system helps to prevent international and zoonotic-related infections and outbreaks. However, countries which had not adapted to this system suffered the problem of food scares.
These countries include: Poland, Czech Republic and Hungary. The formal mechanism for dissemination of epidemic intelligence is still endorsed by most of the European Union countries thus reducing the rate of food scares in Europe. The causes of food scares vary in various counties around Europe but all the causes carry a similar resultant effect which is driven by food policy development throughout Europe and consumer buying behaviour. There are three major types of food scares in Europe which are: microbiological related, contaminant and animal related disease scares.
Microbiological related scares were reported to have the most adverse effect on consumption behaviour and customer perception in the 1980s. This was related to the outbreak of food borne pathogen known as Salmonella which led to many food poisoning incidences in Europe with the United Kingdom being the most affected region. Contaminant related scares are associated with the use of antibiotics, pesticides and hormones (Knowles, T. et al, 50). The use of growth hormones in vegetation and pastoral farming in the 1990s raised a lot of concern to food consumers as many farmers intoxicated farm products by using excessive growth hormones to facilitate faster growth.
As a result the European Union organization posed a legal barn to the use of growth-promoting hormones in vegetable and beef production. Animal disease related scare was another factor that limited food consumption in Europe (Knowles, T. et al, 53). Avian influenza and foot and mouth diseases are the most common animal diseases that cause scare-type reaction from consumers to the current date.
This is due to human phobia to animal diseases. It is scientifically proven that avian influenza and foot and mouth diseases do not pose any threat to human health and yet they are the major causes of food scare in terms of the animal disease related scare aspect. The study of food scare trend is important as it helps in the research of formal mechanized solutions to food related issues and their impacts in food production as well as consumption. Food is a basic need in human existence thus poses a great treat to human health and life.
Food scares are currently experienced in all points of the world. Food scare study promotes awareness of the contaminated food related substances thus providing caution to consumers. It also helps in the economic build-up in terms of food production and manufacturing as both producers and consumers remain vigilant of food production trends in the market. Work Cited Knowles Tim, Moody Richard & McEachern G Morven. British Food Journal: European food scares and their impact on EU food policy. 109(1), pp. 43-67.
Extracted. www. emeraldinsight. com/reprints. ac. uk. 2007. Print