Ana Ramalho (CCMAR) visits Nofima
Consumer data analyse and publication written

Ana Ramalho (CCMAR – Portugal) visits Nofima (Norway) for statistical data analyses of consumer data and collaboration in scientific publication.

1. Purpose of the STSM

Ana Ramalho from Centre of Marine Sciences (Portugal) visited Themis Altintzoglou of Nofima (Norway) aiming to analyse data collected from a consumer questionnaire submitted to the Portuguese population and also to develop corresponding appropriate statistical data treatment.

2. Description of the work carried out during the STSM;

The PhD project – Paving the way to establish farmed fish as a functional food: fortification strategies of gilthead seabream with health valuable compounds (SFRH/BD/73452/2010) – funded by the Foundation for Science and Technology (Portugal) is undergoing within the Aquaculture Research Group of CCMAR (Portugal).

One of the main objectives of this PhD project is to understand consumers’ preferences concerning fish as food and to assess consumers’ receptivity towards farmed fortified fish. The expertise on consumers’ surveys to perform this task was found in the Consumer and Marketing Research Group at NOFIMA, with Dr. Themis Altintzoglou. Under the scope of the mentioned PhD project a questionnaire was designed to explore consumers’ opinion on the functional fish thematic. Since Portugal has Europe’s highest per capita fish consumption (about 56 kg/person/year), it was particularly interesting to evaluate Portuguese consumers’ perceptions towards functional fish. To gain knowledge on fish consumption habits, on which fish attributes are valorised during purchasing and on consumer’s acceptance of aquaculture fish fortification trough feeding, were the main goals.

The short term scientific mission addressed mainly the questionnaire data analyses and appropriate statistical data treatment. Throughout the visit, the daily work was organized during morning meetings where fruitful discussion occurred and the work planning was decided. Data collected from the consumers’ questionnaire was analysed and the adequate statistical calculations were defined. Pearson’s Chi-square and Analysis of variance tests were applied with p<0,05 as the level of statistical significance, using SPSS19® software. With the obtained results, the scientific publication guide lines were delineated.

The main conclusions achieved within this study were clearly settled at the end of the visit. The collaboration established allowed the interaction and knowledge exchange of young researchers from different but complementary working fields.

3. Description of the main results

At the end of the short term scientific mission the publication was ready to be finalized in order to be submitted for publication. Financial support from the Feed for Health COST Action will be acknowledged in the final submitted manuscripts.

4. Future collaboration with host institution

The collaboration between CCMAR and NOFIMA, as the host institute, was considered very successful, and will continue in order to finalise the scientific article and subsequent submission. NOFIMA and CCMAR institutes are willing to establish future collaborations if the opportunity for new projects under this thematic arises.

5. Foreseen publications/articles resulting or to result from the STSM

The article produced during the short term scientific mission is currently titled: “Consumer acceptance of fortified fish from aquaculture: Insights from Portugal”. To be submitted to Food Quality and Preference. Additionally, an abstract for an oral presentation was submitted at the XI Food and Nutrition Conference (Nutrition a base for sustainable health, 24 – 25 May, Porto, Portugal) – entitled “Consumers’ perception about enriched fish from aquaculture in Portugal”.

Ana Ramalho STSM
Design & Programming: Zenlex