A History of the Ministry of Information, 1939-46



This investigation was carried out for the publicity department of the Ministry Of Food. The aim was to give information on:

  1. 1) The extent to which housewives read Food Facts.

  2. 2) The importance to housewives of Food Facts recipes, in relation to other information given in Food Facts advertisements.

  3. 3) The extent to which Food Facts recipes were used.

  4. 4) The way in which Food Facts recipes should be presented in order to attract the greatest possible attention.

The necessary information was collected form a representative sample * of English housewives in 1934 personal interviews. The interviews were conducted by trained investigators who recorded information on uniform schedule. The schedule included a questionnaire (see Appendix 2) of which the housewife was asked to choose one which she would be most likely to follow.

Beside the information relevant to the subject the following classification date were obtained; Economic standard of the family; family size; age of informant; years responsible for cooking; education of informant; size of town in which informant lived; whether or not informant went out to work; whether or not she had ever had tuition in cooking; and whether or not she liked cooking.

The material was analysed by all these classification, but as some of the data overlapped or did not give results which could be interpreted, only five categories of the classification are used in the following report. For example, an analysis by family size gave very similar results to an analysis by economic standard; and groupings by the number of years responsible for cooking were practically the same as groupings for age. In addition, analysis by town size and by whether or not the housewife went out to work did not influence the housewife's attitude to Food Facts markedly enough to produce statistically significant differences. Therefore analyses by the following data only are presented.

[1] For detailed description of sample, see Appendix 3.

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