Preview: Consumer Perceptions of Food Focus Group Study

As the world population continues to grow and the average American is now at least three generations removed from the farm according to the American Farm Bureau , the consumer perceptions of food have also changed. Mikaela Wieland is a junior in Purdue’s College of Agriculture and she is working to better understand consumers’ perception of food, and she needs your help.

What: “I am doing a focus group study as a part of my undergraduate research project to complete my Honor’s degree,” Wieland said. “I spent the summer coming up with a topic and as I was pondering what was important to me, I kept coming back to the idea of food security and food waste, and I wanted to see how it impacts college student consumers and how much they think about it.”

When: Tuesday, Feb. 28, Thursday, March 2 and Monday, March 6

Where: Agricultural Administration Building – Room 121

Why: To discuss college student consumers opinion and thoughts on food waste, specifically the waste of produce. In addition, there will be a free meal provided for participation.

Who: All interested students. The goal is to have 6-10 people in each focus group.

If you are interested in participating contact Wieland ( or go to to select a date and time

If you’re wondering what a focus group is defines it as a representative group of people questioned together about their opinions on political issues, consumer products, etc.

The University of Arizona states that focus groups can help give you information on how groups of people think or feel about a particular topic, give greater insight into why certain opinions are help, help improve the planning and design of new programs, provide a means of evaluating existing programs and produce insights for developing strategies for outreach.

Wieland is working with Dr. Tucker and Dr. Pfeiffer from Purdue College of Agriculture’s Youth Development & Agriculture Education for this focus group study.

“I think food security is a big issue that constantly needs work done on, and if I can do anything to impact my little part of the world, that is satisfying to me,” Wieland said.

Photo Credit: Mikaela Wieland. 

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