Title page for ETD etd-1114102-133418

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Mclennon, St. Everald A
Author's Email Address smclen1@lsu.edu
URN etd-1114102-133418
Title Analysis of Consumer Perceptions toward Biotechnology and Their Preferences for Biotech Food Labels
Degree Master of Science (M.S.)
Department Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
R. Wes Harrison Committee Chair
Lynn Kennedy Committee Member
Roger Hinson Committee Member
  • genetically engineered foods
  • genetically modified foods
  • labeling
  • biotech food labels
  • conjoint analysis
  • ordered probit
  • biotechnology
Date of Defense 2002-10-31
Availability unrestricted
Using a sample from the seven largest metropolitan areas in the United States, (Denver, Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta, New Orleans, New York, and Houston), consumer attitudes concerning agricultural biotechnology is examined. Conjoint analysis is used to examine consumer preferences for the labeling of biotech foods. The study examines the relationship between the consumerís knowledge and attitudes regarding biotech foods and their preferences for food labels. Consumersí attitudes regarding a healthy diet, and their risk perceptions regarding biotech foods were found to have a significant effect on the general use of food labels and preferences for labeling of biotech foods. The most significant finding of the study is that consumers prefer mandatory labeling of biotech foods, rather than FDAís current voluntary labeling policy.

The conjoint results show that the most important attribute regarding a biotech label was the presence of a logo, contributing 48.7 % to the preference rating. A text disclosure describing the benefits of the biotech ingredient was determined to be the second most relevant attribute, accounting for 40.87% of the respondentís preferences for labeling. The third most important attribute (contributing 10.43%) was the location of the logo on the principal display panel (PDP) of the product package.

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