Consumer perceptions of conventional and alternative protein sources : A mixed-methods approach with meal and product framing

Possidónio, C. and Prada, M. and Graça, J. and Piazza, J. (2021) Consumer perceptions of conventional and alternative protein sources : A mixed-methods approach with meal and product framing. Appetite, 156: 104860. ISSN 0195-6663

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Understanding consumer perceptions of meat alternatives is key to facilitating a shift toward more sustainable food consumption. Importantly, these perceptions may vary according to the characteristics of the consumer (e.g., preferences, motivations), the product (e.g., sensory attributes) and the encounter (e.g., how the meat alternative is presented/framed). Qualitative and quantitative methods were applied to examine consumer perceptions of five proposed alternatives to meat: legumes, tofu, seitan, lab-grown meat, and insects. In Study 1, 138 participants provided free associations with regards to conventional animal proteins (e.g., red/white meat, fish) and the five alternatives. Three profiles of consumers were identified: (1) hedonically motivated meat eaters uninterested in meat substitutes; (2) health-oriented meat eaters open to some meat substitutes; and (3) ethically conscious meat avoiders positively oriented to most meat alternatives. In Study 2, the presentation of the product was experimentally manipulated: 285 participants evaluated the same five meat alternatives along several dimensions (e.g., edibility, healthiness), either when framed as an individual product or as part of a larger meal. Overall, most meat alternatives benefited from a meal framing, with the notable exception of legumes, which benefited from an individual framing, and insects which were evaluated quite negatively regardless of framing. The present findings suggest that there is not a single way to frame all meat alternatives that will improve their appeal to all consumers.

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Journal Article
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This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Appetite. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Appetite, 156, 2020 DOI: 10.1016/j.appet.2020.104860
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? lab-grown meatmeal framingmeat alternativesmeat substitutesplant-based foodpsychology(all)nutrition and dietetics ??
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17 Nov 2020 14:15
Last Modified:
28 Jun 2024 01:44