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Food Science and Technology

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SCHNETTLER, Berta; MIRANDA, Horacio; SEPULVEDA, José  and  DENEGRI, Marianela. Consumer preferences of genetically modified foods of vegetal and animal origin in Chile. Ciênc. Tecnol. Aliment. [online]. 2012, vol.32, n.1, pp.15-25.  Epub Mar 06, 2012. ISSN 0101-2061.

Given the debate generated by Genetically Modified (GM) foods in developed and developing countries, the aim was to evaluate the importance of determining factors in the preference of consumers in Temuco and Talca in central-southern Chile for GM foods using conjoint analysis and to determine the existence of different market segments using a survey of 800 people. Using conjoint analysis, it was established that, in general, genetic modification was a more important factor than either brand or price in the consumer's decision to purchase either food. Cluster analysis identified three segments: the largest (51.4%) assigned greatest importance to brand and preferred genetically modified milk and tomato sauce; the second group (41.0%) gave greatest importance to the existence of genetic manipulation and preferred non-genetically modified foods; the smallest segment (7.6%) mainly valued price and preferred milk and tomato sauce with no genetic manipulation. The three segments rejected the store brand and preferred to pay less for both foods. The results are discussed based on studies conducted in developed and developing countries.

Keywords : genetically modified foods; milk; tomato sauce; conjoint analysis; cluster analysis.

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