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Acceptance of Functional Foods: A Comparison of French, American, and French Canadian Consumers


  • JoAnne Labrecque
  • Maurice Doyon
  • François Bellavance
  • Jane Kolodinsky


"Food products have diversified with industry globalization. To market functional foods efficiently, food managers must gauge cross-cultural variance of functional food acceptance. Expanding on previous research, we investigate young consumers' acceptance of functional foods. Data collected in French Canada, United States, and France in 2004 reveal that business students are slightly in favor of functional foods, and associate health benefits with these foods but very few product-related benefits. Students do not have strong opinions on the trustworthiness of information and expressed a slight interest in purchasing this type of product. Analyses of cultural differences revealed significant, albeit small, divergence in these variables. Statistical analysis performed on the full sample assessed the impact of food attitudes and other cognitive and attitudinal factors on the general attitude toward functional foods. Health and product-related benefits and belief about the credibility of information are the main positive determinants of the acceptance of functional foods, followed by high knowledge. Apart from the negative impact of Neophobia, none of the other food attitudes influences attitudes toward functional foods. Linear regressions performed on each subgroup indicated similar positive cross-cultural results for health and product-related benefits. However, cross-cultural differences are detected for knowledge, credibility of information, and food attitudes that influence acceptance of functional foods." Copyright 2006 Canadian Agricultural Economics Society.

Suggested Citation

  • JoAnne Labrecque & Maurice Doyon & François Bellavance & Jane Kolodinsky, 2006. "Acceptance of Functional Foods: A Comparison of French, American, and French Canadian Consumers," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 54(4), pages 647-661, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:canjag:v:54:y:2006:i:4:p:647-661

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    Cited by:

    1. Marette, Stéphan & Roosen, Jutta & Blanchemanche, Sandrine & Feinblatt-Mélèze, Eve, 2010. "Functional food, uncertainty and consumers' choices: A lab experiment with enriched yoghurts for lowering cholesterol," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(5), pages 419-428, October.
    2. Ramo Barrena & Mercedes Sánchez, 2010. "The link between household structure and the level of abstraction in the purchase decision process: an analysis using a functional food," Agribusiness, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(2), pages 243-264.
    3. Chang, Hung-Hao, 2013. "Functional food consumption and depression among the elderly — What can we learn from a longitudinal survey?," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 33(C), pages 187-193.
    4. Ding, Yulian & Veeman, Michele & Adamowicz, Wiktor L., 2013. "Functional Food Choices: Impacts of Trust and Health Beliefs," 2013 Annual Meeting, August 4-6, 2013, Washington, D.C. 149007, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    5. Jill E. Hobbs & Stavroula Malla & Eric K. Sogah & May T. Yeung, 2014. "Regulating Health Foods," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 15768, April.
    6. Hellyer, Nicole Elizabeth & Fraser, Iain & Haddock-Fraser, Janet, 2010. "Food Choice, Nutritional Information And Functional Ingredients: An Experimental Auction Employing Bread," 115th Joint EAAE/AAEA Seminar, September 15-17, 2010, Freising-Weihenstephan, Germany 116424, European Association of Agricultural Economists;Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    7. Armenak Markosyan & Jill J. McCluskey & Thomas I. Wahl, 2009. "Consumer Response to Information about a Functional Food Product: Apples Enriched with Antioxidants," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 57(3), pages 325-341, September.
    8. Maurice Doyon & Céline Jullien & JoAnne Labrecque, 2011. "Mesure des propensions individuelles à payer pour les aliments fonctionnels : Une approche expérimentale auprès de consommateurs français," CIRANO Working Papers 2011s-59, CIRANO.
    9. Stavroula Malla & Jill E. Hobbs & Eric K. Sogah, 2016. "Estimating the Potential Benefits of New Health Claims in Canada: The Case of Soluble Fiber and Soy Protein," Canadian Journal of Agricultural Economics/Revue canadienne d'agroeconomie, Canadian Agricultural Economics Society/Societe canadienne d'agroeconomie, vol. 64(2), pages 173-197, June.
    10. Bechtold, Kai-Brit & Abdulai, Awudu, 2013. "Combining Likert scale attitudinal statements with choice experiments to analyze pref-erence heterogeneity for functional dairy products," 87th Annual Conference, April 8-10, 2013, Warwick University, Coventry, UK 158851, Agricultural Economics Society.

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