Much of Fox's research focuses on consumer attitudes toward food safety. He worked with Shonda Anderson, a recent master's graduate in agricultural economics, Durango, Colo., to recently explore consumer attitudes on cloned animals.
"We were interested in finding out how different groups of consumers react to the possibility of consuming products that were derived from cloned animals," Fox said. "We were also interested in how those reactions differed between countries, particularly in the United States and Europe."
Fox and Anderson surveyed Kansas State undergraduates in agriculture, English and sociology classes. They also surveyed agriculture undergraduates at University College Dublin in Ireland and Ecole Superieure d'Agriculture in Purpan, France. The survey asked participants about their likelihood of buying and eating meat and other products from cloned animals.
Results showed differences on both an international and local level, most significant being that Americans were more accepting of cloned products than Europeans.
Other findings include:
* Students in Ireland and France were less likely to consume cloned products than Kansas State students.
* At Kansas State, sociology and English students were less likely to consume cloned products than the agriculture students.
* Participants were more likely to consume cloned products after learning that both the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the European Food Safety Authority had stated that cloned animal products pose no safety risk.
More of the European students were concerned about cloning from an ethical and moral perspective, while the American students cited food safety concerns. The strength of opposition to cloning was much stronger for those who morally opposed cloning than for those who opposed it for food safety concerns, Fox said.
The survey also found that women were less likely to purchase cloned products, and people familiar with science were more accepting of cloned products.
"It will be interesting to see how big an impact the messages of groups campaigning for or advocating against the concept of cloning will have on consumers, versus how big an impact that scientific information from a university like Kansas State will have," Fox said. "Or, if people have access to both messages, which they choose to believe."
While the survey results can't be generalized across any large population, Fox said they do offer insight into American and European views toward food technology. Fox and Anderson are working on a similar study in China and Honduras.
"Results suggest that a significant number of people do have concerns about cloning from an ethical and moral perspective," Fox said. "That will be very relevant if these products come to market and are labeled as such, because we would expect to see a significant number of people avoiding them."
Anderson currently works as a marketing manager at the National Beef Packing Company in Kansas City, Mo. She received her undergraduate degree from Colorado State University and graduated from Durango High School in 2001. She is the daughter of Eddie and Marti Anderson of Bayfield, Colo.
Sean Fox, 785-532-4446, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sean Fox | Newswise Science News
Crop achilles' heel costs farmers 10 percent of potential yield
24.01.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
How much drought can a forest take?
20.01.2017 | University of California - Davis
A Swedish-German team of researchers has cleared up a key process for the artificial production of silk. With the help of the intense X-rays from DESY's...
For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.
According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...
An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...
Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...
Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...
19.01.2017 | Event News
10.01.2017 | Event News
09.01.2017 | Event News
24.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
24.01.2017 | Life Sciences
24.01.2017 | Health and Medicine