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Do Americans consider the food supply to be at risk from a terrorist attack? (Medicine 09:00 AM, Saturday, April 5, 2003 Brewer/Frost Science 141 Dr. Nancy J. Swails-Presiding).


Since the attacks of 9/11, 2001, Americans have been told to be alert and observant. There have been heightened transportation checks and the development of an alert system by color as well as the establishment of a Homeland Security Dept. With all of these precautions does the average citizen feel that the food supply is a risk from a terrorist attack? Have people changed their food habits since 9/11? This research was to investigate if Americans feel that the food supply is in danger and if their food habits have changed in any way due to the traumatic events. A survey was developed and field-tested, before being sent to 500 Individuals (ns) in Indiana, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, Tennessee, Ohio, and Iowa. The participants were selected at random using telephone books. A convenience sample of 200 students (s) was also surveyed. The results indicated that only 9% [45 (ns) and 18 (s)] have changed their food habits since 9/11. A few [15 ns (.03%) and 10 s (.05%)] reported heighten awareness of surrounds, such as restaurants. Seventy-eight (15.6%) non-students and 30 (15%) students responded that they eat more desserts and foods they want. However, over 57% (284) of the non-students and 60% (122) of the students felt that that the food supply was at risk for biological, nuclear or other contamination risk. The greatest concerned mentioned by both non-students [78% (390)] and students [81% (162)] was water. The students [45% (90)] mentioned contamination of fast foods such as colas or beef patties, while this concerned only 13% (65) of the non-students. There were concerns about risks to our food supply and a few personal changes. These concerns were not restricted to age, education, income or gender.

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Author:Spillman, Diana M.
Publication:The Ohio Journal of Science
Article Type:Abstract
Geographic Code:1U3OH
Date:Mar 1, 2003
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