Food handlers and Norovirus transmission: Social science insights

Changing behaviours to mitigate Norovirus transmission: a new report prepared for the Food Standards Agency.

Food handlers and Norovirus transmission: Social science insights

The author(s)

  • Chris Perry Behaviour Change Lead
  • Graham Bukowski Head of Regulation Research
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Norovirus – also known as the ‘winter vomiting bug’ – affects three million people a year and costs the health service up to £106million. A significant proportion of these cases (314,000) are due to the consumption of contaminated food. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) commissioned Ipsos MORI to conduct the Food handlers and norovirus transmission: Social science insights study to understand and change food handler behaviour.

Ipsos MORI worked with microbiologists from Queens University Belfast and the UCL Centre for Behaviour Change to conduct a mixed method behavioural insights research study consisting of case studies incorporating depth interviews, structured environmental and behavioural observation and survey work. The data generated from the primary research identified relevant determinants by target behaviours and culminated in the development of a multi-component intervention strategy. Ipsos MORI and the FSA are working together to further develop and trial the intervention strategy. 

The author(s)

  • Chris Perry Behaviour Change Lead
  • Graham Bukowski Head of Regulation Research

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