Women's perceptions about genetically modified foods

Friday, 17 February, 2017

Presenting ‘the facts’ is not enough to get women to change their perceptions about genetically modified (GM) foods.

University of Adelaide researchers held a series of focus groups looking at women’s attitudes towards GM foods and found some interesting results. Even highly educated women do not engage or modify their thinking after simply being presented with the facts.

The information is affected by each woman’s context. For example, plant scientists believed that lack of evidence of harm meant that GM food was safe to eat while those from health sciences were cautious about consuming GM food due to the lack of evidence of safety. Two very different positions arrived at by scientifically educated women from exactly the same information. The differences arise because of differing concepts of risk.

The results of focus groups have been published online ahead of print in the journal New Genetics and Society.

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