Research Finds Extreme Opponents of GM Foods Know the Least but Think They Know the MostJanuary 16, 2019
People with the most extreme views opposing genetically modified (GM) foods think they know most about GM food science, but actually, they know the least, according to new research published in Nature Human Behaviour. The research was a collaboration between researchers at the Leeds School of Business at CU Boulder, Washington University in St. Louis, the University of Toronto, and the University of Pennsylvania.
Marketing and psychology researchers asked more than 2,000 U.S. and European adults for their opinions about GM foods. The surveys asked the respondents how well they thought they understood GM foods, then tested how much they actually knew with a battery of true-false questions on general science and genetics. The researchers found that despite the scientific consensus that GM foods are safe for human consumption, many people oppose their use. More than 90 percent of the respondents reported some level of opposition to GM foods.
"This result is perverse, but is consistent with previous research on the psychology of extremism," said Philip Fernbach, the study's lead author and professor of marketing at the Leeds School of Business. "Extreme views often stem from people feeling they understand complex topics better than they do."
Nicholas Light, a Leeds School of Business PhD candidate in marketing suggests that changing people's minds first requires them to appreciate what they do not know. He added that without this first step, educational interventions might not work very well to bring people in line with the scientific consensus.
Read more about this research in CU Boulder Today.
See more articles:
News from Around the World
- Blueprint for Plant's Immune Response has been Found
- Scientists Identify How Plants Sense Temperature
- Research Finds Extreme Opponents of GM Foods Know the Least but Think They Know the Most
- NRGene and Toyota Decode Strawberry Genome to Develop Better Varieties
- Approval of Monsanto's GM Cotton Seed Patent to Boost India's Biotech Industry
- Mechanism Behind Plant Memory has been Unraveled
- Improved Crops Can Double Agricultural Production in Europe
- EFSA: GM Maize (MON 89034x1507xMON 88017x59122xDAS-40278-9) and Soybean (A2704-12) are Safe for Release
- Rice Plants Engineered for Better Photosynthesis Make More Rice
- Meta-analysis of Soil Enzymatic Responses to Bt Crops
Plant Breeding Innovations
- Scientists Report Functionally Diverse Type V CRISPR-Cas Systems
- Gene Editing for Developing GM Spicy Tomatoes
Beyond Crop Biotech
- Gene-edited Tilapia Not Classified as GMO in Argentina
- Biotechnology to Possibly Address Forest Health Problems
- Bt Brinjal: The Bangladesh Experience
Subscribe to CBU: