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Social science

Food is more than the sum of its parts. It involves values, beliefs, identities, cultures and risk and benefit perceptions that drive both consumer and producer behaviour. Understanding the way people think and behave, and why, is critical to developing high quality food standards that meet their intended objectives. FSANZ’s social science capability ensures that our regulatory decisions are informed by the best available consumer evidence. 

Our research and reviews

Social scientists at FSANZ undertake original research and literature reviews to provide evidence to inform applications and proposals to change the Food Standards Code, or to better understand consumer awareness, attitudes and behaviours in relation to food labelling and consumption. 

Read our research reports and reviews below.

Consumer Insights Tracker

Public confidence in the food supply is a cornerstone of a healthy population and a strong economy. FSANZ is committed to maintaining and enhancing public trust in the food regulatory system in partnership with food and health authorities across Australia and New Zealand. The annual Consumer Insights Tracker is a mechanism for understanding everyday consumers’ views on the food regulatory system, providing access to our most important but least accessible stakeholders.

The Consumer Insights Tracker is an annual, online survey of approximately 1,200 Australian and 800 New Zealand consumers aged 18+ years. It is based on a nationally representative sample by the interlocked quotas of age, gender, and location. The survey consists of approximately 40 quantitative questions that measure consumer trust and confidence in the food system, use and understanding of food labelling, attitudes and consumption intentions around new and emerging foods, and food safety perceptions and behaviours.

Reports and infographics from the latest iteration of the Consumer Insights Tracker are available below.

2023 Results

Original research 

Literature reviews 

Page last updated 2 May 2024