Media Attitudes with Respect to Raw Milk Consumption: A Pilot Study of a Food Risk Behavior
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Human Nutrition Honors Theses; 2011
Consuming milk that has not been pasteurized is a risk behavior for foodborne illness that some people are actively seeking. For educational purposes, it is important to better understand what factors motivate a person to make certain decisions in order to understand their behavior. This study focuses on the information from media channels that is influencing consumer decisions. The objective of this research was to identify individual characteristics that influence the channel beliefs, or salience and perceptions of various media outlets, of a person. This information can be used to better understand the motivation to partake in risk behavior. The method used was a survey. Study participants were asked about which media outlets they found most salient, their perception of the media as biased, as well as individual characteristics including age and political philosophy. Their opinions about media and preferred media outlets were compared to their individual characteristics. The purpose of this comparison was to find relationships between individual characteristics and channel beliefs, leading to a better understanding of their decision making process. The study has found consumers of raw milk and pasteurized milk to be similar in their perceptions of the media bias. However, subjects indicated a difference in media channel preference based on age and type of milk consumed. To successfully reach a target audience it is crucial to understand their perceptions of media and preferred channels. These findings are important because the ultimate goal of the overarching research is to provide educational materials related to this food risk behavior.
This work was supported by a grant from the National Integrated Food Safety Institute (Grant No. 2009-51110-20162) of the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.
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