The main aim of this paper is to analyse how time has modified the concept of food safety risk for consumers, determining, both, new regulatory developments, particularly related to information and consumer protection, and new market opportunities that facilitate the introduction of innovative products, including functional foods. Subsequently the work provides a brief review of the literature on consumers attitudes towards functional foods as a preamble to the empirical part of the study, where the results of a direct survey are presented in order to offer some indications to developers and marketers as well as government bodies that are interested in designing consumer communication strategies and effective health programs. The final section concludes with a discussion of the implications of the results and suggests some future research avenues.
Keywords: Functional food, consumer behaviour, food and health
Jel Code: D12, D18, I10, Q13