FOOD SAFETY IN KENYA, A CONSUMER PERSPECTIVE.
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Food safety is crucial to all consumers. Yet with numerous media exposés on food safety, the question often arises about whether the Kenyan consumer is concerned at all about the safety of their food. This is due to the varied reactions amongst consumers to these exposés; some get really worried and agitated about the state of affairs while others do not engage at all. This survey seeks to respond to this question by bringing to the fore the views of consumers on the issue of food safety, with a particular focus on pesticide contamination.
The survey got views from 9,592 consumers from Nairobi, Kajiado, and Kirinyaga counties. The gender composition of the respondents was 54% male and 46% women. The age of the respondents ranged from below 18 years to 50 years with those between 35 to 50 and 18 to 35 years forming the majority. The respondents were involved in food provision as either the main providers or contributors. Only 1% of the respondents were not involved at all in food provision.
The results of the survey show that most consumers were concerned about the safety of their food with 55% indicating that they were very worried about the current food safety situation, 33% were slightly worried and 12% were not worried at all. The major food safety concerns as identified by the consumers were pesticide use/misuse (87%), lack of proper sanitation at the market (60%), contamination during transportation (37%), and contamination
during preparation (30%).