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Meat Sci. 2015 Apr;102:49-58. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.11.013. Epub 2014 Dec 9.

'Would you eat cultured meat?': Consumers' reactions and attitude formation in Belgium, Portugal and the United Kingdom.

Author information

1
Ghent University, Department of Agricultural Economics, Coupure links 653, B-9000 Gent, Belgium. Electronic address: wim.verbeke@ugent.be.
2
University of Surrey, School of Psychology, Guildford Surrey GU2 7XH, United Kingdom.
3
Ghent University, Department of Agricultural Economics, Coupure links 653, B-9000 Gent, Belgium; International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines.
4
Instituto Universitário de Lisboa (ISCTE-IUL), Cis-IUL, 1649-026 Lisboa, Portugal; Universidade de Évora, Departamento de Psicologia, Centro de Investigação em Educação e Psicologia (CIEP), Escola de Ciências Sociais, 7005-345 Évora, Portugal.
5
Instituto Universitário de Lisboa (ISCTE-IUL), Cis-IUL, 1649-026 Lisboa, Portugal; University of Oslo, Department of Psychology, 0373 Oslo, Norway.
6
White October, OX4 1LF Oxford, United Kingdom.
7
University of Bath, Department of Psychology, BA2 7AY Bath, United Kingdom.

Abstract

Cultured meat has evolved from an idea and concept into a reality with the August 2013 cultured hamburger tasting in London. Still, how consumers conceive cultured meat is largely an open question. This study addresses consumers' reactions and attitude formation towards cultured meat through analyzing focus group discussions and online deliberations with 179 meat consumers from Belgium, Portugal and the United Kingdom. Initial reactions when learning about cultured meat were underpinned by feelings of disgust and considerations of unnaturalness. Consumers saw few direct personal benefits but they were more open to perceiving global societal benefits relating to the environment and global food security. Both personal and societal risks were framed in terms of uncertainties about safety and health, and possible adverse societal consequences dealing with loss of farming and eating traditions and rural livelihoods. Further reflection pertained to skepticism about 'the inevitable' scientific progress, concern about risk governance and control, and need for regulation and proper labeling.

KEYWORDS:

Attitude; Consumer; Cultured; In-vitro; Meat; Synthetic

PMID:
25541372
DOI:
10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.11.013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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