Breakfast cereal products consumption and consumer preferences: a study on dietary fibre content awareness

Diva Santos, José A. Lopes da Silva, Elisabete Pinto*, Manuela Pintado

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review



It is well established that BCP could have several health benefits, mainly related to its fibre content. This study aimed to evaluate the BCP consumption in Portugal, the reasons behind the consumers’ choices, and evaluate consumer awareness on fibre content and health benefits. The hypotheses were that i) consumers are not aware of the dietary fibre benefits nor the relationship between daily intake and benefits; ii) BCP are a good strategy to increase fibre intake. The novelty of this work is related to the fibre awareness evaluation and whether the increase in fibre content on BCP could increase its consumer interest. A cross-sectional study with both quantitative (survey) and qualitative (focus group) approaches was performed. A total of 1126 participants completed the survey, and two focus group were performed, one focus group with people with 24-31 years old and another with parents with ages between 33-41 years old. It was assessed the effect of parenting on BCP perception, consumption, and purchase. More than half of the Portuguese population consume BCP at least once a week, mainly at breakfast, for convenience, taste, and healthiness. Granola and flakes are the mainly consumed by adults, and extruded and flakes by children. Consumers identify a lack of products that combine taste and healthiness. Fibre content does not determine the BCP purchase, and consumers are not aware of all the health benefits of fibre nor its daily recommendation. When enlightened, consumer defended that this information should be shared massively, as well as how to achieve its recommended amount. The BCP approach is different among adults with or without children. Consumers demand for healthy & tasty BCP. Informed consumers on fibre benefits (besides the satiety and intestinal health) and daily recommended amount have higher willingness to purchase BCP rich in fibre.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Food Processing & Beverages
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Breakfast cereals
  • Ready-to-eat cereals
  • Consumer awareness
  • Dietary fibre


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