Kan sundhed mærkes?

Mia Annexgård Skjøth Nielsen & Louise Kasten Larsen

Student thesis: Master thesis


In recent years a health wave has hit Denmark, but despite this big focus on health overweight and obesity is a growing problem. In Denmark, the occurrence of overweight and obesity has increased significantly in recent decades. 47 % of the Danish adults’ population are overweight and 13% are obese. Although overweight and obesity is an individual problem, it costs the Danish society dearly. The additional costs associated with overweight and obesity in Denmark is estimated to equal more than 5 % of the total health spending. Therefore, since 2008 the politicians have tried to help the Danes to make healthier food choices through food labelling which, including Nøglehullet, Fuldkornslogoet and GDA. By introducing food labelling they wanted to minimize he complexity that consumers linked to buy healthier foods. If you look at the numbers for overweight and obesity, it is seen that the numbers are still increasing and the problem isn’t solved. One may therefore wonder about the complexity associated with food shopping is reduced or whether it is in fact higher than previously due to the vast number of labelling that the consumers now have to deal with. The question is therefore what value consumers ascribe to these labels, whether they use them or not when food shopping or whether the politicians and the Danish retail trade could spend time and money on a more health-promoting way? These problems are investigated by mixed methods, which mean that both a qualitative and a quantitative research method are used for collecting data. The qualitative method is interviews with eight persons. In these interviews the respondents are answering questions about Nøglehullet, Fuldkornslogoet, GDA, their position on food labelling and some questions about some of the confusing elements linked to the food labels. Furthermore the respondents are going through two exercises, one about a confusing element linked to GDA and one where the respondents have to rank cereals, chocolate and rye bread products taking health, price, taste and quality in consideration. The quantitative method is a questionnaire prepared in cooperation with Coop. The questionnaire has 977 respondents and is about the respondents’ use of food labelling, their position to food labelling and then there is questions about Nøglehullet, Fuldkorslogoet and a new food label, Fuldkornsdråben, which is a label that Fuldkornspartnerskabet wishes to introduce in Denmark. The analysis shows that many of the consumers do not use the labels when buying food. Many of the consumers do not understand the three labels and some of them have a wrong understanding of them and connect them with ecology, sustainability, Fair Trade etc. In addition, the consumers’ Side 3 af 244 mention that they think there is too many food labels, which then makes it more confusing than beneficial. The analysis shows that consumers only have a superficial understanding of the tree labels and connect them with ecology, sustainability, Fair Trade etc. In addition, the consumers despite the fact, that they like the concept of food labelling find that there today is too many food labels, which then makes them more confusing than beneficial. This is perhaps the reason why the consumers don’t use the food labels when buying food, which indicates that there may be a more healthpromoting way to spend time and money.

EducationsMSc in Economics and Marketing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2015
Number of pages244