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Do consumers care how a genetically engineered food was created or who created it?

Jayson Lusk (), Brandon R. McFadden and Norbert Wilson

Food Policy, 2018, vol. 78, issue C, 81-90

Abstract: This paper explores heterogeneity in consumer preferences for foods and policies that relate to different innovative plant breeding technologies. As a starting point in our analysis, we report results from almost four years of monthly surveys with U.S. consumers, which show slight food safety concern for genetically engineered food with no discernable trend of increased or decreased concern over time. We find small differences in consumer preferences for policies related to different plant breeding methods, with the strongest support for the notion that bioengineered crops should be regulated based on health and environmental outcomes rather than the process used to create new crops. Other survey results reveal support or opposition for genetically engineered food depends on consumers’ perceptions of who created the technology. We also find that food safety concerns related to genetically engineered food are related to perceptions about the distribution of benefits from the technology across the food supply chain.

Keywords: Consumer; CRISPR; Fairness; GMO; Genetically modified food; Genetically engineered food (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q13 Q18 C83 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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