Citizen attitudes towards present and future beef consumption before and after the COVID-19 pandemic

Valentina Mansky de la Fuente, María José Hötzel, Dayane Lemos Teixeira, Rafael Esteban Larraín, Daniel Enriquez-Hidalgo

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Abstract

There's been a change in citizens' attitudes towards beef consumption in high-income countries, resulting in a decline in its consumption. The COVID-19 pandemic may have impacted citizens' attitudes and behaviours towards beef consumption. This study aimed to investigate Chilean citizens' attitudes towards beef consumption during the initial 18 months of the pandemic. Socio-demographic characteristics and attitudes towards beef consumption were asked in two questionnaires done in 2020 (n = 1142) and 2021 (n = 1221). Citizens' attitudes to beef eating and production did not change between the start and more than a year after the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants not related with animal production, female, young, and non-meat consumers demonstrated more negative attitudes towards beef consumption and production. Half of the participants agreed that beef is bad for the environment, but only 30% agreed that beef is bad for human health. Half of participants had reduced beef consumption and 48% expressed intentions to reduce beef consumption in the future, primarily motivated by concerns related to animal welfare, the environment, and human health. The majority of participants (80%) thought that their fellow citizens should reduce their beef consumption but only 50% had confidence that this will occur. We conclude that Chilean consumers' attitudes to beef eating did not change due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants expressed strong concern about beef consumption both individually and socially, due to environmental, animal and health concerns, and believed Chileans should reduce beef consumption in the future but had low confidence that this will happen.

Original languageEnglish
Article number109467
JournalMeat Science
Volume212
Early online date27 Feb 2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2024

Keywords

  • Attitudes
  • Beef
  • Behaviour
  • COVID-19
  • Consumption
  • Meat
  • Pandemic

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