Consumer Awareness, Perception and Practice on Consumption of Cooking Palm Oil in 10 Major European Countries: Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, United Kingdom, Spain and Poland

Palm cooking oil is commonly used in commercial cooking because it is lower in cost than other oils and remains stable at high cooking temperatures. The oil can also be stored longer than other vegetable oils. The research problem that will be addressed in this study is pertaining to the negative perception towards palm cooking oil consumption in selected European countries. The objective of the research is to ascertain the level of awareness, perception and practice of the consumers towards palm cooking oil.  The general aim is to examine the socio-economic and lifestyle determinants of palm cooking oil purchase choice in selected European countries. The research will use a triangulation method, whereby, firstly secondary data from various reports [i.e. Malaysia Palm Oil (MPOB) Annual Reports; various Monthly Palm Oil Trade Statistics; World Palm Oil Outlook, Global Market Report] will be used to obtain any baseline information of prevalent practices. Primary data from the 10 main palm oil importing European countries using google form to collect the consumer’s responses based on a scheduled and open-ended questionnaire. The samples (total 1600 people) belong to the ten selected European countries of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Sweden, UK, Spain, and Poland as they are the top ten palm oil importers in Europe. Data about the type of oil purchased and usage, dietary intake, socio-economic and demographic characteristics will be collected using various social media platforms. Besides, a focused group workshop will also be organised to gather expert opinion and influential members of health groups, wellness groups and consumer advocates. The subjects for this research are adults, above 18 years of age, rural and urban. Purchase and consumption of palm cooking oil is determined by socio-economic status (SES), increased awareness on positive campaigns and health benefit awareness. For the conclusion, the data show that, in addition to SES, health awareness is associated with the selection of palm cooking oil in the ten selected European countries. These data should be considered when targeting specific marketing strategies to increase demand and enhance sales of palm cooking oil globally. This will also contribute towards enhanced export of palm cooking oil and increase Malaysian GDP in the long run.

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