|dc.description.abstract||Purpose- The purpose of the study was to investigate the perception of in-vitro meat (IVM) among New Zealand consumers and to understand their purchase and consumption behaviour using a customized conceptual framework developed in this study. In addition, preliminary trials for production of IVM using stem cells, biopolymers, edible 3D scaffolds and bioprinting technology were carried out as an alternative to traditional 2D cell culturing technique.
Methodology – An online survey questionnaire was created using Qualtrics software to understand the perception of IVM, based on the conceptual framework. Participants (n=206) were recruited personally to take part in the survey. The data collected in the survey were subjected to PLS-PM analysis. The conceptual framework was tested for validity, Goodness of fit (GoF), Cronbach’s alpha. Whereas, the internal validity was assessed using Cronbach’s alpha, KMO value, inter-item correlation values (β-coefficients) and p-values. All the analyses were carried out using R Studio 1.1.463 with R version 3.5.1 PLSPM package.
Findings- The findings suggest that variables such as environment and sustainability, health and safety, current purchase and consumption behaviour have a strong relationship and a robust effect on IVM purchase and consumption behaviour. Consumers’ cultural beliefs had minimal influence on IVM purchase likelihood. Results in this study also indicated that most New Zealand consumers had neutral opinions in terms of engaging with IVM. Hence, if NZ consumers are educated about IVM and its potential benefits, then IVM will be more acceptable. Whereas, preliminary trials to produce 3D IVM using stem cells were unsuccessful due to damage and fungal contamination of the cell-laden scaffolds.
Research limitations – The online survey in this study was open to all consumers in New Zealand (NZ), however, the majority of the participants were young and educated consumers. Thus, the sample population may not be a representative of the general population. Furthermore, this study was focussed on New Zealander participants. It would be beneficial to have comparisons across participants from different countries.
Practical implications – This study fills the research gap by providing insights into the opinions of New Zealanders on IVM. The findings from our study will be beneficial for future IVM/ sustainable meat alternatives industry, as it provides information on in-vitro meat purchase and consumption behaviour based on New Zealand consumers opinion.
Originality/ value – This is the first study on New Zealand consumers that addresses the consumer's purchase and consumption behaviour towards IVM.||en_NZ