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Abstract

This study examines consumer willingness to consume genetically modified food products with clearly stated benefits and risks. Results suggest that male; white, Southerners, and those with some college education are more likely to consume genetically modified fruits and vegetables. Trust in government, biotech industry, and medical professional on matters relating GM foods also have a positive impact on the willingness to consume GM foods; such trust allays fears associated with risks posed by GM technology. Conversely, risk seems to negatively influence the willingness to consume GM products. Once the respondents are well informed of the risk of the product, this greatly diminished their willingness to consume such products. Older respondents (age above 55 years), those taking time to read food labels, and those with either high or low score on actual knowledge of GM based on a simple scientific quiz, are less enthusiastic toward GM foods. Income, religion and political affiliation did not play any significant role on influencing the willingness to consume GM fresh fruits and vegetables.

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