"If only consumers would know how healthy whole grain foods are they would use them."
The results from a recent consumer study do not support this notion since whole grain was strongly associated with healthiness. Consumers in Italy, UK and Finland rated whole grain food high based on the following characteristics: healthy, natural, nutritionally balanced, and slow energy release. However, in UK and Italy also refined grain products were perceived nearly as healthy as whole grain. This may result a lack of motivation to change consumption habits. On contrary, in Finland, refined grain was considered clearly unhealthy. The results are part of a study based on a survey of 500 consumers in UK, Italy and Finland. The study belongs to EU funded project Healthgrain (www.healthgrain.org) coordinated by VTT.