Antioxidants are the objective of scientific, both clinical and nutritional, investigations. Presently, they constitute one of the methods to fix food, and to prevent unfavourable rancid processes of fats. The objective of this paper was to determine a level of the consumer knowledge on antioxidants, and approaches of the respondents to the application of antioxidants in food products. The opinion polling was conducted in the Province of Wielkopolska, twice: in 2000 and 2005. Each time, 150 people were polled. The poll was conducted using a questionnaire consisting of fifteen (15) questions. The respondents were asked to choose one or several answers. Distinguishing factors were: sex, age and education of the people polled. On the basis of the survey performed, it was stated that the significant majority of the respondents was familiar with the term ‘antioxidant’ (77% of people in 2000, and 75% of people in 2005), and their number did not change in the two years being compared. They usually pointed out the following products as main sources of antioxidants: vegetable oil (30% in 2000, and 36% in 2005), wheat nucleus (30%, and 25%), spices (11% in 2000, and 26% in 2005). Despite the fact that the majority of respondents declared they knew the term „antioxidant”, as many as 44% (in 2000), and 45% (in 2005) could not properly indicate the sources of antioxidants. Furthermore, the people polled proved to correctly know purposes of adding antioxidants to food products; they mainly emphasized their protective and fat-rancid process preventing functions – 67% in 2000, and 64% in 2005, respectively. While surveying the consumers’ approach to antioxidants, it was also stated that the consumers polled were less negatively disposed towards the food products containing compounds, denoted by ‘E’, including the antioxidants.
antioxidants, food, consumer, polling