business news in context, analysis with attitude

The Star Tribune reports on a new study, published in the British Food Journal, saying that “U.S. consumers know surprisingly more about the fat content of the foods they buy than their French counterparts. Paradoxically, the obesity rate is nearly three times higher in the United States (35%) than it is in France (12%). In light of these results ... the researchers cast doubt on the notion that providing nutritional information is an effective way to encourage healthy eating habits.”
KC's View:
Two reactions to this story.

One is that apparently the researchers talked to a whopping 300 consumers. So maybe it wasn’t the biggest sample.

Second - and this is actually more important, IMHO - just because people may not use this information does not mean that the food business should not make it available. Maximum transparency is a good business policy, regardless of whether consumers actually are making use of the information. Otherwise, when things go bad, one can be accused of obfuscating the issues.