More than three quarters of consumers are now aware of the government's 5-a-day message, with more people than ever claiming to meet the healthy-eating target.

Seventy eight per cent of consumers now understood the importance of eating five portions of fruit and veg a day, up from 71% in 2006, according to the FSA's latest annual Consumer Attitudes to Food survey, while 58% were now eating that amount - up three percentage points on 2006.

However, only 45% of people in Northern Ireland said they ate 5-a-day compared with 59% in England, 54% in Scotland and 50% in Wales.

Overall, 87% said a limited budget was not a barrier to eating 5-a-day.