Acceptance of genetically modified food: comparing consumer perspectives in the United States and South Korea


This study examines public perceptions of biotechnology, specifically the consumer approval of genetically modified food products, from plant as well as from animal origin, based on data collected from national surveys conducted in both the United States and South Korea. South Korean consumers reported better understanding of food production, science, and technology relative to U.S. consumers. South Korean consumers also recalled having heard more about genetic modification than did U.S. consumers. Findings also suggest that consumers in the United States and South Korea who possessed an accurate knowledge of the applications and outcomes of genetic modification technology were more likely to approve of its use for the creation of foods than those who had inaccurate or no knowledge of the technology. Results also indicate that consumers who considered labeling of genetically modified foods to be necessary are less likely to approve of the genetic modification of foods than those who did not. Consumers in both countries are less approving of genetic modification of animals than the genetic modification of plants. However, U.S. consumers are more approving of using genetic modification technology to create animal‐derived foods than are South Korean consumers.

Document Type





Q13, biotechnology, consumer approval, genetic modification, South Korea, United States

Publication Date


Journal Title

Agricultural economics