Accuracy of Risk Perception of Zoonoses Due to Intensive Animal Farming and People’s Willingness to Change Their Animal Product Consumption

Mariëlle Stel*, Janina Eggers, Stina Nagelmann

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
125 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Zoonoses have become more frequent and intense. As intensive animal farming plays a role in the emergence of zoonoses, the increase in intensive animal farming increases the risk of future zoonotic outbreaks. This raises the question of to what extent people are aware that intensive animal farming poses a risk to zoonoses. Furthermore, if people would be made aware, would they be willing to take protective measures, such as reducing their animal food consumption? This was investigated in a representative descriptive study of 1009 Dutch citizens. We measured participants’ perception of the risk of intensive animal farming and their perception of the way animals are treated. We measured their willingness to consume fewer animal products and their opinions on governments banning intensive animal farms. Additionally, participants estimated the percentage of meat from intensive farms that they consume. The main results showed that most participants were aware that zoonoses can occur through intensive animal farming, but not where their meat comes from. The majority of participants were willing to change their animal consumption behavior if this could reduce future zoonotic outbreaks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number589
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Volume14
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jan 2022

Keywords

  • Animal products
  • Behavior change
  • Consumer behavior
  • Intensive animal farming
  • Zoonoses

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