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Attitudes and acceptance of young people toward the consumption of insects and cultured meat in Germany.
Food Quality and Preference
The present study examined the willingness of children and adolescents (N = 718, MAge = 13.67, SD = 2.31; female = 57.5%) from Germany to consume insects and cultured meat. One focus of the study was the comparison of attitudes toward foods made from insects and cultured meat in general and in a specific form (a burger). Another focus was analyzing the influence of selected nutritional-psychological factors on the willingness of children and adolescents to consume these products. In addition to sociodemographic factors (age, sex), meat consumption, familiarity, attitudes, food neophobia, and food disgust were included as variables. The study participants showed a significantly higher willingness to consume the cultured meat burger than the insect burger, although no difference could be shown in their attitudes toward the alternatives as food (i.e., irrespective of their form of preparation). Hierarchical multiple regression revealed that the attitude toward the alternative protein product in burger form, specifically, was the strongest predictor for the willingness to consume both burger alternatives. This illustrates that the attitudes of children and adolescents toward a particular product are especially important. The negative influence of food neophobia on the willingness to consume the meat alternatives, which had previously been reported in other studies, was confirmed in this study. In the regression model with the sociodemographic variables, food disgust showed a negative influence on the willingness to consume the two meat alternatives; however, this negative influence was not detected after including the nutritional-psychological variables in the model. Proposals for the use of the results of this study in designing marketing strategies and educational interventions in schools are presented.

Quantitative investigation of the willingness to consume insects and cultured meat.

First investigation with German children and adolescents on this topic.

Acceptance for cultured meat higher than for insects.

Attitude identified as the strongest predictor for the acceptance of both meat alternatives.

Food disgust did not influence the acceptance of the two meat alternatives.