So far focus group discussions have been carried out in Spain and Belgium covering consumers having different consumption levels of seafood. For this purpose a common agenda has been developed for guiding the group discussions. Important issues were: choice of seafood as a meal versus other kinds of foods and motives for choice; consumers’ perception of the most important barriers for eating more seafood; consumers’ knowledge of health, risk and safety issues in relation to seafood; consumers’ perception and use of quality indications for judging seafood quality, e.g. freshness and other sensory characteristics; consumers’ attitudes towards frozen versus fresh seafood and towards convenience aspects like ready-made meals; consumers’ knowledge on handling and cooking of fish.
Based on qualitative results about consumer motives and barriers for seafood consumption from focus groups and consumer behaviour models and scales developed to measure key constructs, quantitative representative consumer surveys in five countries (Denmark, Belgium, The Netherlands, Spain and Poland) have been initiated in October 2004. Next step is thus data analysis and validation of qualitative results, as according to the plan.