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Consumers’ Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behavior Regarding Functional Food Products-A Survey from Selected Areas of Sri Lanka

Authors:

P. G. I. Dias ,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Gangodawila, Nugegoda, LK
About P. G. I.
Faculty of Graduate Studies
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R. A. U. J. Marapana,

University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Gangodawila, Nugegoda, LK
About R. A. U. J.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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R. M. U. S. K. Rathnayaka,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About R. M. U. S. K.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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S. M. D. S. Gayathri,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About S. M. D. S.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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N. G. D. Anuradha,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About N. G. D.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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T. C. Kananke,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About T. C.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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R. M. K. T. Rathnayaka,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About R. M. K. T.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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M. G. A. N. Perera,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About M. G. A. N.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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R. S. Sabaragamuwa,

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About R. S.
Faculty of Applied Sciences
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N. M. Wickramaratne

Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, P.O. Box 02, Belihuloya, Rathnapura, LK
About N. M.
Faculty of Medicine
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Abstract

Purpose: The purpose of this research is to assess the influence of demographical variables (gender, age, education level, study area, nature of residence, residential milieu, suffering from non-communicable diseases (NCDs), and monthly household income) on the consumption frequency of mostly available processed food products with health benefits (functional food products-FF) in Sri Lankan market. Consumers’ knowledge of the health-promoting ability of FF, attitude on FF choices, and behaviors on FF consumption were also analyzed.


Research Method: A questionnaire was completed by 303 individuals (60.40% females, 39.60% males, and 83.17% of the total having a diploma/degree) from the Western, Central, Southern, Sabaragamuwa, and Uwa provinces. Cronbach’s alpha coefficient assessed the reliability of the questionnaire and Pearson’s chi-squared test was used to examine the independence among qualitative variables. The Likert scale numbers were transformed to means and articulated the weights of the study variables. The Correlation analysis was carried out to find the association between Consumers' knowledge and attitudes regarding FF.


Findings: The age, education level, and NCDs of the respondents were significantly affected (p<0.05) in the FF consumption frequency of the selected sample. The population between the ages of 18-34 who have a diploma/degree and no NCDs was more likely to consume FFs. However, most of them have no clear idea and were not sure of the curing ability of FFs or their bioactive ingredients. They were not always thinking about healthiness while purchasing. Consumers' knowledge and attitudes regarding FF observed a positive correlation (P<0.01). The results showed that tea/herbal infusions were the most preferred FF type by the respondents. As per the responses, less awareness was a significant barrier to consuming FFs.


Research Limitations: The respondents in this study were biased toward the young age group with a diploma/degree.


Originality/Value: These findings provide valuable information concerning Sri Lankan consumers’ behavior and attitudes toward FF consumption. The knowledge can be utilized in future FF development processes.

How to Cite: Dias, P.G.I., Marapana, R.A.U.J., Rathnayaka, R.M.U.S.K., Gayathri, S.M.D.S., Anuradha, N.G.D., Kananke, T.C., Rathnayaka, R.M.K.T., Perera, M.G.A.N., Sabaragamuwa, R.S. and Wickramaratne, N.M., 2023. Consumers’ Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behavior Regarding Functional Food Products-A Survey from Selected Areas of Sri Lanka. Journal of Agricultural Sciences – Sri Lanka, 18(1), pp.140–153. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/jas.v18i1.10104
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Published on 01 Jan 2023.
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