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Appetite. 1999 Aug;33(1):71-88.

Quantification of consumer attitudes to health and hedonic characteristics of foods.

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  • 1University of Helsinki, Department of Food Technology, Finland.


Health and Taste Attitudes Questionnaires were developed to assess consumers' orientations toward the health and hedonic characteristics of foods. Items were generated in a qualitative study. The original 37 items on health and 44 on taste were rated from "strongly disagree" to "strongly agree" by a representative sample of 1005 Finnish adults (18-81 years). The number of items was reduced using factor and item analysis, resulting in 20 health- and 18 taste-related statements. Three health-related and three taste-related factors were extracted. The health-related factors were labelled as "General health interest", "Light product interest", and "Natural product interest". The taste-related factors were named "Craving for sweet foods", "Using food as a reward", and "Pleasure". Cronbach's alphas of the multi-item scales, based on the statements loading highly on each factor, ranged from 0.67 to 0.89. Age and gender affected the responses. Females were more interested in the health and taste aspects of foods than were males. Younger respondents were less concerned with health but more interested in taste than were older respondents. A preliminary test of predictive validity was conducted by analysing subjects' responses to foods with weak and strong connotations of health and taste, and currently the questionnaires are being validated with further behavioural tests.

Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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