Food Waste Knowledge in Austria: A Consumer Perspective

Oliver Meixner, Nicolina Eleonora Kolmhofer, Felix Katt


In times of increasing environmental awareness, the topic of food waste receives high attention from practitioners and scholars alike. In this study we analyze how well-informed Austrian consumers are regarding food waste and what factors might influence this knowledge. In a consumer survey (n = 470), we examined consumer food and food handling knowledge, cooking skills, place of living, personal ties to agriculture, engagement in initiatives against food waste, and their  effect on food waste knowledge. To understand what effect social desirability might have on participants’ answers, we administered the survey both in an online and a face to face setting. Amongst others, our findings suggest a positive relationship between knowledge about food and food handling and knowledge about food waste prevention as well as a social desirability bias in reporting one’s own knowledge about food waste prevention. We could not find a statistically significant relationship between food and food handling knowledge, and food waste knowledge. Furthermore, we did not find evidence that a personal connection to agriculture or a rural place of living leads to a higher food waste knowledge. Finally, the unexpected influence of cooking skills is at least surprising to a certain extent. We conclude this study by outlining potential areas for future research as well as managerial implications.

Full Text:



ISSN 2194-511X


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License