A compendium of food statistics on the island of Ireland 2023
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The promotion of good food safety behaviours throughout the food chain is reliant on a scientifically robust and accurate evidence base. This includes not only information on people’s behaviour and preferences regarding the foods they eat but also accurate statistics on food production, trade and economics, and information on food product recalls, foodborne illness, and the impact of external influences such as climate change. A broad range of public and private sector organisations are involved in the generation of this data, which remains fragmented and, in many cases, difficult to access. In Ireland and Northern Ireland, there are several agencies and bodies responsible for collecting, organising and analysing agrifood (agriculture and food production) statistics. In addition, statistical data about Northern Ireland is often mixed with data from Great Britain and so is presented as data for the whole of the United Kingdom.
safefood commissioned this project to generate a compact but detailed collection of food chain statistics for both Ireland and Northern Ireland. This work was undertaken during 2019 and 2020 and investigated the most up-to-date data available at the time. The data have already been published in a variety of other sources. References are provided for these sources, which the reader can consult if they need greater context or a broader perspective of the overall issues.
safefood wishes to thank the Principal Researcher on this project – Dr Karen Clarke, Director at Ipsos in Belfast, Northern Ireland – and her colleagues, particularly Dr Sinéad Furey of the Ulster University Business School, who worked on this project.