Citizens' Views on Farm Animal Welfare and Related Information Provision: Exploratory Insights from Flanders, Belgium [Book Review]
Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 23 (6):551-569 (2010)
The results of two independent empirical studies with Flemish citizens were combined to address the problem of a short fall of information provision about higher welfare products. The research objectives were (1) to improve our understanding of how citizens conceptualize farm animal welfare, (2) to analyze the variety in the claimed personal relevance of animal welfare in the food purchasing decision process, and (3) to find out people’s needs in relation to product information about animal welfare and the extent to which the current information caters to these needs. The first study consisted of a survey conducted in three consecutive years (2000–2002, n = 521) and was complemented with more recent qualitative data from four focus group discussions (2006, n = 29). Citizens’ conceptualization of farm animal welfare matched reasonably well with those in the scientific literature, although it is clearly influenced by a lower level of practical experience and a higher weight of empathy. In general, respondents indicated that animal welfare was an important product attribute, although it was less important than primary product attributes such as quality, health, and safety. Moral issues, rather than a perception of higher quality, were the main influence on preferences for higher welfare products. At present, higher standards of animal welfare are mostly guaranteed within more general quality assurance schemes. Yet people’s decisions to not choose higher welfare products seems to be related to the perceptual disconnection between eating animal food products and the living producing animals. Respondents generally thought better information provision was required and the present level of provision was strongly criticized. In combination, the findings of both studies help inform the discussion about how citizens can be informed about animal welfare and the preferred content, source, and medium of such information. The paper also provides insights into citizens’ semantic interpretation of the concept of animal welfare (what wordings they use) and the range of relevance that animal welfare has for different groups that, in turn is useful in identifying which segments can be targeted. This can contribute to a more effective valorization of animal welfare as a product attribute
|Keywords||Animal welfare Conceptualization Information Labeling Social attitudes|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
References found in this work BETA
Understanding Animal Welfare: The Science in its Cultural Context.David Fraser - 2008 - Wiley-Blackwell.
Sustainable Food Consumption: Exploring the Consumer “Attitude – Behavioral Intention” Gap. [REVIEW]Iris Vermeir & Wim Verbeke - 2005 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 19 (2):169-194.
Animal Rights and Human Obligations.Tom Regan & Peter Singer (eds.) - 1989 - Cambridge University Press.
Dealing with Ambivalence: Farmers' and Consumers' Perceptions of Animal Welfare in Livestock Breeding. [REVIEW]Hein Te Velde, Noelle Aarts & Cees van Woerkum - 2002 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 15 (2):203-219.
Vegetarian Meat: Could Technology Save Animals and Satisfy Meat Eaters?Patrick D. Hopkins & Austin Dacey - 2008 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 21 (6):579-596.
Citations of this work BETA
The Concept of Farm Animal Welfare: Citizen Perceptions and Stakeholder Opinion in Flanders, Belgium. [REVIEW]Filiep Vanhonacker, Wim Verbeke, Els van Poucke, Zuzanna Pieniak, Griet Nijs & Frank Tuyttens - 2012 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 25 (1):79-101.
Public and Consumer Policies for Higher Welfare Food Products: Challenges and Opportunities. [REVIEW]Filiep Vanhonacker & Wim Verbeke - 2014 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 27 (1):153-171.
Exploring the Potential of Dutch Pig Farmers and Urban-Citizens to Learn Through Frame Reflection.Benard Marianne & de Cock Buning Tjard - 2013 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 26 (5):1015-1036.
Animal Welfare Concerns and Values of Stakeholders Within the Dairy Industry.B. A. Ventura, M. A. G. Von Keyserlingk & D. M. Weary - 2015 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 28 (1):109-126.
Determinants of Individual Attitudes Toward Animal Welfare-Friendly Food Products.L. Cembalo, F. Caracciolo, A. Lombardi, T. Del Giudice, K. G. Grunert & G. Cicia - 2016 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 29 (2):237-254.
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Ethics and Farm Animal Welfare.J. F. Hurnik & Hugh Lehman - 1988 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 1 (4):305-318.
Legitimacy & Canadian Farm Animal Welfare Standards Development: The Case of the National Farm Animal Care Council. [REVIEW]Andrea Bradley & Rod MacRae - 2011 - Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics 24 (1):19-47.
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