2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Study Design
2.2. Participants and Recruitment
2.4. Discussion Guide
3.1. Theme 1. Children’s Favorite Snacks
3.2. Theme 2. Knowledge of Sustainability Concepts
3.3. Theme 3. Sustainability and Eco-Labels
3.4. Theme 4. Healthfulness of Food Products and Other Food Attributes
3.5. Theme 5. Pocket Money and Food Prices
4.1. Taste Is the Main Driver of Children’s Favorite Snacks
4.2. Communicating Sustainability Concepts
4.3. Using Simple Eco-Labels to Inform about Environmental Sustainability of Foods
4.4. Children Use FOP Warning Labels to Assess Healthfulness of Food Products
Institutional Review Board Statement
Informed Consent Statement
Conflicts of Interest
|Researchers Script Focus Group Discussion|
|Start time:||End time:|
|Number of children:|
- Purpose of Discussion and Rules
- Please remember to respect each other by not sharing what is said in the focus group with people outside of the study.
- Speak one at a time and raise your hand to speak.
- Treat each other with respect by listening and helping others feel comfortable. Remember there are no right or wrong answers.
- Interview Questions (please check off questions as you ask them)
- Attractive packaging
- Favorite brand
- Convenient, can be eaten right away
- Special (don’t get it at home)
- Nutritional value (warning labels)
- Good for the planet]
- Discussion of pocket money and using it for snacks:
- Tell us some of the reasons why you think is good to have your own money.
- Do you get pocket money? How often do you get pocket money? [See what the children say: regularly, weekly, monthly, how much, from whom do you get that money?]
- If you want to buy something from your pocket money, do you decide alone what you like to buy, or do you ask one of your parents or another adult?
- Do you use pocket money to buy food snacks?
- Talk about the place where you usually buy snacks. Why do you like to go there?
- Discussion of snacks:
- Do you know those products? What do you think about those? Tell us if they mean something special for you and why that is.
- Did you ever eat any of those? Talk about the places where can you find those.
- Do you like to eat any of those products? If not, why not? Which one do you like most? So, one of the products is a strawberry yogurt. Do you like strawberry yogurts? Are there other flavors such as vanilla you prefer or is strawberry high on your list? What about apples? Do you like sliced apples as snack? I have here a package of cookies. Are there other cookies you prefer? Do you drink fruit juices as snack? Which one is your favorite? Why?
- Now let’s do a poll! See, we have some pictures here [Share screen with PowerPoint slide that show different foods] and ask you to indicate how much you like the different products that I will be showing. You can select from the options in the screen which one is better for you. [Children can check the respective box in the poll and indicate whether they like the product a lot, like it, find it ok, do not like it, or do not like it at all.] [Discussion about the indicated preferences.]
- Would you like to buy any of those products as a snack with your pocket money? If so, which one would you like to buy most?
- Now, if you do see the real products, would you still like your choice? If not, why not. Who of you likes the real version of the product (s)he chose more than the picture? Who is disappointed?
- Now assume that we would be willing to sell those products. Write on your paper what you would be willing to pay for each of those products. If you would not want to pay anything because you do not want to have one or all of those products just write a ‘0‘. Would you show us your papers on the screen? [Discussion of prices.]
- What do you think about the package of the products? Do you like it? What do you like? Could you recycle it? [Wait for responses; see whether children like the package and what they like.] Would you prefer for the cookie package another package? [Wait for reaction; then instructor shows the children a colorful package for comparison.]
- Discussion of environmental sustainability:
- What does “carbon footprint” mean to you? [If the child had no answer or said, “I do not know”, then ask further questions, use other proxy words.] Have you ever heard people talking about the carbon footprint? What might they be referring to?
- What does it mean to help the planet? [If the child had no answer or said, “I do not know”, then ask the child to think more personally.] What do you think you could do to help the planet?
- Let’s think about ways we can help the planet while we choose foods. Do you think you can help the planet if you eat less meat? Do you think that by eating less packaged foods you can help the planet? Why or why not?
- Now, let’s do another poll! See we have some pictures here. [Share screen with PowerPoint slide that show different foods and ask children to indicate which of the information presented they understand the best.] Imagine that you find this information in a food package. [Children can check the respective box in the poll and indicate whether they understand the information a lot, understand it for the most part, understand it somewhat, do not really understand it, or do not understand it at all. Examples of information to display are eco-labels, written information about carbon footprint in a box, written information, and pictures in a box, etc.](Discussion about the indicated preferences).
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