Public acceptance of nanotechnology foods and food packaging: The influence of affect and trust

Michael Siegrist, Marie Eve Cousin, Hans Kastenholz, Arnim Wiek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

310 Scopus citations

Abstract

Nanotechnology is increasingly being employed in the areas of food production and packaging. Public perception will be crucial to the realization of these technological advances. We examined how lay people (N=153) perceive nanotechnology foods and nanotechnology food packaging, and we examined the factors that influence willingness to buy these products. Participants received some general information about nanotechnology, and specific information about four nanotechnology applications. Overall, participants were hesitant to buy nanotechnology foods or food with nanotechnology packaging. Results suggest, however, that nanotechnology packaging is perceived as being more beneficial than nanotechnology foods. Results further suggest that social trust in the food industry is an important factor directly influencing the affect evoked by these new products. As suggested by the affect heuristic, affect had an impact on perceived benefits and perceived risks. Perceived benefit seems to be the most important predictor for willingness to buy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)459-466
Number of pages8
JournalAppetite
Volume49
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2007

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Keywords

  • Affect heuristic
  • Food hazards
  • Nanotechnology
  • Risk perception
  • Trust

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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