Explicit and implicit attitude toward an emerging food technology: The case of cultured meat

Gerben A. Bekker, Arnout R.H. Fischer*, Hilde Tobi, Hans C.M. van Trijp

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

41 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Cultured meat is an unfamiliar emerging food technology that could provide a near endless supply of high quality protein with a relatively small ecological footprint. To understand consumer acceptance of cultured meat, this study investigated the influence of information provision on the explicit and implicit attitude toward cultured meat. Three experiments were conducted using a Solomon four-group design to rule out pretest sensitization effects. The first experiment (N = 190) showed that positive or negative information about cultured meat changed the explicit attitude in the direction of the information. This effect was smaller for participants who were more familiar with cultured meat. In the second experiment (N = 194) positive information was provided about solar panels, an attitude object belonging to the same sustainable product category as sustainable food products such as cultured meat. Positive information about solar panels was found to change the explicit attitude in the direction of the information. Using mood induction, the third experiment (N = 192) ruled out the alternative explanation that explicit attitude change in experiment 1 and 2 was caused by content free affect rather than category based inferences. The implicit attitude appeared insensitive to both information or mood state in all three experiments. These findings show that the explicit attitude toward cultured meat can be influenced by information about the sustainability of cultured meat and information about a positively perceived sustainable product. This effect was shown to be content based rather than merely affect based. Content based information in a relevant context could therefore contribute to the commercial success of cultured meat.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)245-254
JournalAppetite
Volume108
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Keywords

  • Attitude change
  • Cultured meat
  • Explicit attitude
  • Implicit attitude
  • Information provision
  • Mood

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