Public debate on biotechnology is embroiled in controversy over the risks and benefits associated with this emerging technology. Using data from a national survey, this study analyzes public acceptance of biotechnology in food production. Empirical results suggest that while there is general optimism about biotechnology and support for its use in plants, public approval of its use in animals is perhaps more limited. Younger and more-educated individuals are generally more supportive of biotechnology. Attitudes toward biotechnology differ substantially between males and females, and between white and non-whites. While people's religious and social views and confidence in scientists, corporations, and government have significant influences, income and regional differences do not have significant effects on public acceptance of biotechnology.


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