Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale delle Venezie
Italian health authority and research organization for animal health and food safety
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Food risk communication

Food risk communication

In recent decades, the relationship between consumers and food has changed due to several factors including the increasingly rapid changes in the food industry, in the lifestyles of large segments of the population and the occurrence of periodic food crises. All these factors have encouraged the spread of new habits and practices of purchasing and consumption.

Questions and concerns on the current method for managing production systems and livestock have raised and consumers’ request for more transparency and information on food processing is increased. Moreover, consumers are often unconsciously exposed to significant health risks due to improper practices in food handling and food preparation at home.

Ethical Charter – Communication and Training in the IZSVe >

Social research

IZSVe Observatory LogoThe knowledge of consumers’ perceptions and behaviours is a strategic aspect for the development of effective risk communication for the promotion of public health, not only in emergency situations but also in daily practice.

In this perspective, the IZSVe Observatory conducts research on risk communication. The studies aim to promote specific initiatives and communication campaigns for the prevention of risk associated with food consumption and to foster the adoption of healthy behaviours and correct eating habits.

The research projects carried out by the IZSVe are funded by the Italian Ministry of Health.

Research projects of the Observatory cover three main areas:

  • Risk communication
  • Perception of risk
  • Participation and involvement of consumers

Pursuing the following research aims:

  • to study and understand factors influencing risk perception and management
  • to develop and test new social research techniques in the field of food safety and risk communication
  • to use innovative and appropriate communication tools for different target groups
  • to define innovative strategies for the promotion of public health

Projects and publications

Research projects

  • Research project IZS VE 04/14
    Food safety on the web 2.0: creation of an institutional blog as a tool for an effective risk communication.
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  • Research project IZS VE 05/13
    Food bloggers and risk communication: impact of a community-centered training activity aimed at the online dissemination of correct food preparation practices in the household.
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  • Research project IZS VE 03/12
    Scenario workshop and mixed methods approach: two innovative methods for building and evaluating a web-based application designed to communicate chemical risk in food.
    Read more >
  • Research project IZS VE 02/11
    Applying the Nominal Group Technique (NGT) to the construction of a risk communication model for institutional healthcare entities involved in food safety. The case of risks related to bivalve shellfish consumption.
    Read more >
  • Research project IZS VE 08/10 
    Effectiveness of consensus conference targeting university students as a tool to communicate the microbiological risk of consuming meat products.
    Read more >
  • Research project IZS VE 17/09
    Communicating chemical risks in food: comparing paper and web communication tools
    Read more >

  • Research project RF IZP 02/08
    Development of nanotechnogical methods (biosensors) to detect hidden allergens in animal and vegetable origin food
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  • RF IZSVe 02/2008
    Risk-benefit analysis as a tool to support and evaluate nutritional strategies
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  • Research project IZS VE 11/07
    Design of a communication campaign based on the perception of risks associated with consumption of some typical regional (Trentino Alto Adige) products
    Read more >
  • Research project IZS VE 04/06
    Food risks perception in the population of Triveneto: comparison between beliefs and eating behaviours
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  • Research project IZS VE 08/04
    Food safety: development of effective tools to be employed in risk analysis
    Read more >
  • Three-year Plan on food safety in the Veneto Region 2002-2004
    Food risks perception in Veneto Region.
    Read more >

Publications

Proceedings

  • Ravarotto L., Pinto A., Bonaldo S., Mascarello G., Crovato S. (2015). Bivalve shellfish consumption: engaging experts and stakeholders in risk assessment. Poster. 2nd Efsa Scientific conference “Shaping the future of food safety, together”. EFSA journal 2015; 13(10):s1310,137 pp. doi:10.2903/j.efsa.2015.s1310, Milan, 14-16 october.
  • Mascarello G., Crovato S. Pinto A., D’Este F., Bonaldo S., Mantovani C., Ravarotto L. (2015). Piloting the consensus conference model on food safety issues: a dialog between experts and young consumers. Poster. 2nd Efsa Scientific conference “Shaping the future of food safety, together”. EFSA journal 2015; 13(10):s1310,137 pp. doi:10.2903/j.efsa.2015.s1310, Milan, 14-16 october.
  • Mascarello G., Pinto A., Bonaldo S., Crovato S., Mioni R., Ravarotto L. (2015). Who is the consumer of ethnic food? A study on Italian population. Poster. 11th Pangborn Sensory Science Symposium, Göteborg, 23-27 august.
  • Pinto A., Mascarello G., Crovato S., Bonaldo S., Tiozzo B., Ravarotto L. (2015). Risks related to bivalve shellfish consumption: appllication of participatory strategies for risk communication. 24rd SRA E- Conference, Maastricht, 15-17 june.
  • Tiozzo B., Mantovani C., Neresini F., Ravarotto L. (2015). Food risk media monitor: development of an automatic web tool analyse the italian mass media discourse in food safety and food related risks. 24rd SRA E- Conference, Maastricht, 15-17 june.
  • Tiozzo B., Pinto A., Parise N., Neresini F., Crovato S., Ravarotto L. (2015). Using time series to analyse the coverage of food safety issues in Italian newspapers. Considerations for an early identification of public concern for risks. 24rd SRA E- Conference, Maastricht, 15-17 june.
  • Crovato S., Mantovani C., Pinto A., D’Este F., Mascarello G., Ravarotto L. (2014). Defining guidelines for the management of microbiological risk in food: application of the consensus conference methodology. 23rd SRA E- Conference, Istanbul, 16-18 june.
  • Pinto A., Mascarello G., Parise N., Bonaldo S., Crovato S., Ravarotto L. (2014). A classification of Italian consumers based on a proposed measure of their attitudes towards food risks. Poster. SIS 2014 47th Scientific meeting of the Italian Statistical Society, Cagliari, 11-13 june.
  • Mascarello G., Pinto A., Bonaldo S., Mantovani C., Crovato S., Ravarotto L. (2014). Sperimentazione della consensus conference quale metodologia partecipativa per comunicare efficacemente ai giovani il rischio microbiologico alimentare. Poster. II Convegno dell’Associazione Alessandro Liberati/Network Italiano Cochrane “Gli amori difficili. Ricerca e comunicazione possono andare d’accordo?” IRCCS – Istituto di ricerche farmacologiche Mario Negri, Milan, 23 may.
  • Mantovani C.,  Mascarello G.,  Pinto A., D’Este F., Gallina A., Ravarotto  L. (2014). Bringing scientific research into the classroom.  INTED 2014 8th International technology education and development conference, Valencia, 10-12 march.
  • Crovato S., Mascarello G., Pinto A., Ravarotto L. (2013). Testing a serious game for communicating food risk to young consumers: “A mysterious poisoning”. Poster. Edulearn13 5th annual International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies, Barcelona, 1-3 july.
  • Mascarello G., Crovato S., Pinto A., Ravarotto L. (2013). Digital and paper tools for food safety education: exploring adolescents’ preference. Edulearn13 5th annual International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies, Barcelona,1-3 july.
  • Mascarello G., Crovato S., Pinto A., Ravarotto L. (2013). Communicating risks to young consumers.The raw milk experience in Italy. SRA Europe 22th Annual Conference, Trondheim, 17-19 june.
  • Ravarotto L., Mascarello G., Pinto A., Crovato S. (2012). “Against chemical risk”. La tecnica dello storytelling applicata alla comunicazione del rischio chimico negli alimenti. III Convegno nazionale di ricerca in sanità pubblica veterinaria, Rome, 13 september.
  • Mascarello G., Crovato S., Tiozzo B., Petrucco C., Siegrist M., Ravarotto L. (2012). Chemical risk in food: comparing web- and paper-based communication tools, SRA Europe 21th Annual Conference, Zurich, 18-20 june.
  • Ravarotto L., Crovato S., Mascarello G., Contalbrigo L., Tiozzo B. (2012). Self-perception of food related risks: a survey on Italian consumers, SRA Europe 21th Annual Conference, Zurich, 18-20 june.
  • Petrucco C., Mascarello G., Ravarotto L. (2012). Using Digital Storytelling to communicate chemical risks in food to high school students. First Global Conference “Storytelling: Global Reflections on Narrative”, Prague, 3-15 may.
  • Crovato S., Favero L., Mascarello G., Valente A, Pozzato N. (2012). A two-level training and communication program on bovine paratuberculosis in the Veneto Region, Proceedings 11ICP 11th International Colloquium on Paratuberculosis, Sidney, february.
  • Ravarotto L., Mascarello G. (2011). Digital Storytelling per l’insegnamento della sicurezza alimentare. International Conference “Metodologie narrative nei processi educativi e formativi: le potenzialità del Digital Storytelling”, Università degli Studi di Padova, Dipartimento di Scienze dell’Educazione, Padua, 4 october.
  • Ravarotto L., Capozza D., Favara I., Mari S., Trifiletti E. (2009). Messaggi affettivi versus cognitivi nelle comunicazioni relative alla salute. Poster. AIP-IX Congresso Sezione di Psicologia Sociale, Cagliari, 14-16 september.
  • Mari S., Tiozzo B., Arzenton V., Magaudda P., Capozza D., Ravarotto L. (2009). Food risk perception in North East Italy: Challenges for public health communication. Poster. EFFoST 2009, Budapest, 11-13 november.
  • Tiozzo B., Mari S., Magaudda P., Arzenton V., Mantovani C., Capozza D., Neresini F., Ravarotto L. (2009). Producing en effective health communication campaign to prevent salmonellosis infection, Annual SRA European Meeting, Karlstad, 28 june -1 july.
  • Mantovani C., Pulici L., Ravarotto L. (2006). A tavola con sicurezza. “Le dimensioni del rischio”. Un’indagine sulla percezione dei rischi alimentari nella popolazione del Veneto. Poster. Expò sanità. Bologna, 25-27 may.
  • Ravarotto L., Arzenton V., Pulici L., Vio P., Neresini F. (2005). Perception of food related risks in Veneto region (Italy): impact of animal welfare, Proceedings International Conference “Food Safety Risk Communication” (EU-RAIN), Göteborg, 19-20 may.

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