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Information and taste interventions for improving consumer acceptance of edible insects: a pilot study

Authors
  • Woolf, E.1, 2
  • Maya, C.1
  • Yoon, J.3
  • Shertukde, S.1, 4
  • Toia, T.5
  • Zhao, J.6
  • Zhu, Y.7
  • Peter, P.C.8
  • Liu, C.1
  • 1 School of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA 92182, USA.
  • 2 current address: Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO 80525, USA.
  • 3 Brooklyn Bugs, Brooklyn, NY 11221, USA.
  • 4 current address: Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, MA 02111, USA.
  • 5 College of Arts and Letters, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA 92182, USA.
  • 6 School of Kinesiology, Nutrition and Food Science, California State University, Los Angeles, CA 90032, USA.
  • 7 Mission Foods, Irving, TX 75038, USA.
  • 8 Marketing Department, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA 92182, USA.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of Insects as Food and Feed
Publisher
Wageningen Academic Publishers
Publication Date
Mar 09, 2021
Volume
7
Issue
2
Pages
129–139
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3920/JIFF2020.0057
Source
Wageningen Academic Publishers
Keywords
License
Unknown

Abstract

Insects are a sustainable protein source with poor consumer acceptance in developed countries. An Eating Insects Conference and Tasting Demonstration was hosted with a goal of promoting consumption of edible insects. The event consisted of an educational session that provided information about entomophagy followed by a cooking and tasting demonstration of edible insects. Pre- and post-intervention surveys were conducted to assess the effect of the event on participants’ acceptance of entomophagy. Forty-three attendees completed the surveys. After attending the event, participants felt more knowledgeable about entomophagy, which positively correlated with willingness to consume edible insects. Participants who believed that entomophagy is sustainable were more willing to consume edible insects than those who did not. Although all participants consumed insects at the tasting demonstration, those with prior consumption experiences had significantly higher post-intervention willingness scores, indicating repeated exposures may be necessary for improving consumer acceptance of edible insects. The event raised awareness of using insects as food and provided useful information for developing effective interventions to promote insect consumption.

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