Norwegian Health authorities recommend solid food to be introduced between child age 4-6 months, depending on both the mother´s and infant's needs. The aim of this paper is to describe timing of complementary feeding in a current sample of Norwegian mother/infant-dyads and explore potential associations between timing of introduction to solid foods and a wide range of maternal and infant characteristics known from previous literature to influence early feeding interactions. The paper is based on data from the Norwegian randomized controlled trial Early Food for Future Health. In 2016, a total of 715 mothers completed a web-based questionnaire at child age 5.5 months. We found that 5% of the infants were introduced to solid food before 4 months of age, while 14% were not introduced to solid food at 5.5 months of age. Introduction of solid food before 4 months of age was associated with the infant not being exclusive breastfed the first month, receiving only formula milk at 3 months, the mother being younger, not married/cohabitant, smoking, less educated and having more economic difficulties. Not being introduced to solid food at 5.5 months was associated with the infant being a girl, being exclusive breastfed the first month, receiving only breastmilk at 3 months, the mother being older, married and having 3 or more children. This study shows that there are still clear socioeconomic differences regarding timing of complementary feeding in Norway. Infants of younger, less educated and smoking mothers are at higher risk of not being fed in compliance with the official infant feeding recommendations. Our findings emphasize the importance of targeting socioeconomically disadvantaged mothers for support on healthy feeding practices focusing on the infant`s needs to prevent early onset of social inequalities in health.
The home environment is the first environment to shape childhood dietary habits and food preferences, hence greater understanding of home environmental factors associated with vegetable consumption among young children is needed. The objective has been to examine questionnaire items developed to measure the sociocultural home environment of children focusing on vegetables and to assess the psychometric properties of the resulting factors. Further, to explore associations between the environmental factors and vegetable consumption among Norwegian 3-5 year olds. Parents (n 633) were invited to participate and filled in a questionnaire assessing the child's vegetable intake and factors potentially influencing this, along with a 24-h recall of their child's fruit and vegetable intake. Children's fruit and vegetable intakes at two meals in one day in the kindergarten were observed by researchers. Principal components analysis was used to examine items assessing the sociocultural home environment. Encouragement items resulted in factors labelled "reactive encouragement", "child involvement" and "reward". Modelling items resulted in the factors labelled "active role model" and "practical role model". Items assessing negative parental attitudes resulted in the factor labelled "negative parental attitudes" and items assessing family pressure/demand resulted in the factor labelled "family demand". The psychometric properties of the factors were for most satisfactory. Linear regression of the associations between vegetable intake and the factors showed, as expected, generally positive associations with "child involvement", "practical role model" and "family demand", and negative associations with "negative parental attitudes" and "reward". Unexpectedly, "reactive encouragement" was negatively associated with vegetable consumption. In conclusion, associations between sociocultural home environmental factors and children's vegetable consumption showed both expected and unexpected associations some of which differed by maternal education - pointing to a need for further comparable studies.
The main purpose of this study is to identify consumer segments based on the importance of product attributes when buying seafood for homemade meals on weekdays. There is a particular focus on the relative importance of the packaging attributes of fresh seafood. The results are based on a representative survey of 840 Norwegian consumers between 18 and 80 years of age. This study found that taste, freshness, nutritional value and naturalness are the most important attributes for the home consumption of seafood. Except for the high importance of information about expiration date, most other packaging attributes have only medium importance. Three consumer segments are identified based on the importance of 33 attributes associated with seafood: Perfectionists, Quality Conscious and Careless Consumers. The Quality Conscious consumers feel more self-confident in their evaluation of quality, and are less concerned with packaging, branding, convenience and emotional benefits compared to the Perfectionists. Careless Consumers are important as regular consumers of convenient and pre-packed seafood products and value recipe information on the packaging. The seafood industry may use the results provided in this study to strengthen their positioning of seafood across three different consumer segments.