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Food habits and knowledge related with meat on a sample of Portuguese consumers
* 1 , 2 , 1
1  Polytechnic Institute of Viseu
2  Agrarian School of Viseu
Academic Editor: Han-Seok Seo


Background: The consumption of meat has been increasing over the years worldwide, with very high consumption rates in richer countries, such as the United States for example, while, on the other hand, in the poorest countries the consumptions are very low. Studies have shown that people are trying to reduce meat consumption, due to the impact that meat production has on the environment and also because there is an increasing concern for the animal's well-being. Methods: This was a research conducted through a questionnaire survey, applied to a sample of Portuguese consumers through on-line tools, after informed consent. Results: From the participants in this survey 80% agree that the influence of meat consumption on human health depends on the amount consumed, 12% believe that it is beneficial while only 1% agree that meat has a harmful influence in health (7% did not express an opinion). Regarding knowledge, it was observed that 33% do not believe that cattle production is harmful to the environment; 51 % believed that red meat contributes to increase the blood cholesterol; 31% thought that red meat is richer in protein than white meat; 30% do not believe that pork meat is harmful to health. Regarding the pretences for meat in Portugal, chicken is the most preferred (33%), followed by turkey (27%), and then pork (18%). The least preferred meats are horse (2%), goat (4%), and sheep (6%). Conclusion: From this study was possible to conclude that people prefer white meat to pork or veal, and that there is a trend to reduce the consumption of red meats.

Keywords: questionnaire survey; environmental impact; food habits; health