Healthy, but Disgusting: An Investigation Into Consumers' Willingness to Try Insect Meat

M. Poortvliet*, Lieke Van der Pas, Bob C. Mulder, Vincenzo Fogliano

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Consumption of insects has gained interest because it may provide a more sustainable and healthier alternative for conventional meat. However, in Western societies, insect consumption is met with resistance due to negative attitudes based on fear and disgust. To further understand consumers' willingness to try insect meat, a 2 (meat type: bovine vs. insect) × 2 (product type: common vs. uncommon) experiment was conducted (n = 130). Four food choice factors were expected to mediate the effect of meat type and product type on willingness to try: health, sensory appeal, risk perception, and disgust. Results indicate that meat type had no effect on willingness to try. Relative to bovine meat, insect meat was perceived as both healthier and more disgusting, which could explain the absence of a meat type effect. Unexpectedly, use of insects in common products (burgers) as compared to uncommon products (skewers) was met with a lower willingness to try. Also, common products with insect meat was considered to be less healthy and more disgusting, compared to uncommon products with insect meat.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1005-1010
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Economic Entomology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 22 May 2019


  • bovine meat
  • consumer decision-making
  • food choice motives
  • insect meat

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Healthy, but Disgusting: An Investigation Into Consumers' Willingness to Try Insect Meat'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this