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      Factors and conditions influencing the willingness of Irish consumers to try insects: a pilot study

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          Abstract

          Entomophagy is being explored as a sustainable food source in Western countries to combat the ever-increasing effects of climate change. Studies conducted in various European countries determine the factors affecting willingness to consume insects. The current study aims to gain the first insight on this topic in Ireland, a country with a long farming tradition. A survey including open- and closed-ended questions was developed and sent to students and staff of an institute of technology in the West of Ireland. The willingness to consume insects and the factors affecting willingness to consume them under different conditions were assessed. It was found that less neophobic males who do not follow a particular diet were most receptive to entomophagy. People who were willing to try insects were less willing if the insects were to be eaten whole. People who were not willing were more inclined to do so if they were disguised or used to feed livestock. Food neophobia, disgust and safety concerns were barriers to acceptance. Tasty products containing disguised insects in familiar foods are the most likely to be accepted. Education and taste tests are recommended first steps to introducing entomophagy. Using insects to feed livestock has the potential to improve acceptance of entomophagy by introducing insects in the supply chain. However, further research should be conducted to assess acceptance of this amongst Irish farmers. The current study agrees with findings of studies conducted in other European countries and reveals the conditions under which insects could become acceptable among Irish consumers.

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          Food security: the challenge of feeding 9 billion people.

          Continuing population and consumption growth will mean that the global demand for food will increase for at least another 40 years. Growing competition for land, water, and energy, in addition to the overexploitation of fisheries, will affect our ability to produce food, as will the urgent requirement to reduce the impact of the food system on the environment. The effects of climate change are a further threat. But the world can produce more food and can ensure that it is used more efficiently and equitably. A multifaceted and linked global strategy is needed to ensure sustainable and equitable food security, different components of which are explored here.
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            Multiple Comparisons Using Rank Sums

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              Development of a scale to measure the trait of food neophobia in humans

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                ijafr
                Irish Journal of Agricultural and Food Research
                Compuscript (Ireland )
                0791-6833
                02 March 2021
                Affiliations
                1Faculty of Science, Institute of Technology Sligo, Ash Lane, Sligo, Ireland
                Author notes
                †Corresponding author: M. Dermiki, E-mail: dermiki.maria@ 123456itsligo.ie
                Article
                10.15212/ijafr-2020-0126
                Copyright © 2021 Kane and Dermiki

                This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs license CC BY-NC-ND 3.0 IE.

                Page count
                Figures: 1, Tables: 7, References: 53, Pages: 16
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