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  • Author or Editor: M. Süth x
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In recent years, there have been many changes in the food market, which have greatly transformed our approach to food chain supervision. The increasing complexity of the food chain (e.g. globalization of food trade, expansion of raw materials and additives, technical advancement), the frequent changes in food consumption trends and the phenomenon of food crime belong to the most challenging issues for food chain control institutions. These factors require the re-evaluation of the role of consumers in the food chain. The overall aim of this research was to explore consumers’ risk perception and risk avoidance for a more efficient, targeted risk communication. In the survey 1003, face-to-face interviews were made using questionnaire. The statistical analysis of data was followed by the identification and characterization of 4 relevant target groups with cluster analysis method: disinterested youngsters (17.0%), conscious elders (39.4%), food adepts (27.5%), and soul of the family (16.1%). Results indicated, that the Hungarian society can be segmented regarding to food associated risk perception and avoidance. It has been also proven, that risk perception is influenced by demographic factors. Furthermore, we have also managed to conclude that efficient risk communication would require a well-aimed and focused communication strategy.

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The effect of free-range versus cage management system on corticosterone transfer into the eggs was studied in laying hens. Hungarian Yellow laying hens (age: 21 weeks, body weight: 2.0 ± 0.5 kg) were divided into two groups in the spring: Group I, free-range keeping (n = 15 layers, density: ≯ 0.5 bird/m2) in outdoor runs, with continuous access to a commercial layer feed; Group II, hens kept in battery cages (n = 17 layers, density: 2 birds/m2, natural light, continuous access to feed and water). Eggs were collected after a one-week adaptation period on days 2, 7 and 16. Corticosterone (CST) was extracted from homogenised egg samples using an ASE-200 Accelerated Solvent Extractor and then assayed by liquid chromatography linked with tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) [Thermo Quest Surveyor high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) interfaced via Atmospheric Pressure Chemical Ionisation (APCI) ion source to Finnigan/Thermo Quest LCQ Deca MS/MS] using dexamethasone as internal standard with positive APCI ionisation. CST concentrations of whole eggs laid by free-range hens on days 2, 7 and 16 were 0.370 ± 0.218, 0.259 ± 0.066 and 0.915 ± 0.745 ng·g-1, respectively, while those of eggs laid by caged hens were 0.206 ± 0.157, 0.223 ± 0.165 and 0.184 ± 0.110 ng·g-1 at the above sampling times. It is concluded that in free-range laying hens the sharp changes of environmental weather conditions significantly increased the corticosterone content of eggs, while the environmentally controlled and closed battery cage management technology resulted in relatively uniform corticosterone concentrations in the whole eggs.

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