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Consumer preferences for GM food and other attributes of the food system

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  • Sallie James
  • Michael Burton

Abstract

While qualitative surveys regarding consumers' attitudes about gene technologies and their application to food production are plentiful, quantitative studies are less so. The present paper reports choice modelling methods to examine the conditions under which Australian consumers are willing to purchase genetically modified (GM) foods, if at all, and examines those preferences within the context of the food system as a whole. This allows us to compare consumer attitudes towards gene technology to consumer preferences for other features of the food they consume. The results of the choice modelling analysis suggest consumers require a discount on their weekly food bill before they will purchase GM food. Gene technology using animal as well as plant genes was found to be more objectionable to respondents than that using plant genes alone, especially among women. Age seems to affect the preferences for a certain type of food, with older people generally more accepting of the use of gene technology. Copyright Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society Inc. and Blackwell Publishing Ltd 2003.

Suggested Citation

  • Sallie James & Michael Burton, 2003. "Consumer preferences for GM food and other attributes of the food system," Australian Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Australian Agricultural and Resource Economics Society, vol. 47(4), pages 501-518, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajarec:v:47:y:2003:i:4:p:501-518
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    1. Wiktor Adamowicz & Peter Boxall & Michael Williams & Jordan Louviere, 1998. "Stated Preference Approaches for Measuring Passive Use Values: Choice Experiments and Contingent Valuation," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(1), pages 64-75.
    2. Jack L. Knetsch & J. A. Sinden, 1984. "Willingness to Pay and Compensation Demanded: Experimental Evidence of an Unexpected Disparity in Measures of Value," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 99(3), pages 507-521.
    3. Shogren, Jason F & Hayes, Dermot J, 1997. "Resolving Differences in Willingness to Pay and Willingness to Accept: Reply," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 241-244, March.
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