CONSUMERS’ SALIENT BELIEFS REGARDING FOODS FROM EDIBLE INSECTS IN KENYA: A QUALITATIVE STUDY USING CONCEPTS FROM THE THEORY OF PLANNED BEHAVIOUR|
Pambo, KO; Mbeche, RM; Okello, JJ; Kinyuru, JN & Mose, GN
Population growth, urbanization and climate change, are among the factors that have created uncertainties and pressures on current global food and economic systems. Agricultural intensification can no longer support the increasing demand for food, especially of protein origin. Consequently, pressure is mounting on the supply side (private sector) to develop viable alternative sources of protein’ foods. Insects as food and consumption of foods from edible insects (FEI) are being promoted as one potential solution to the declining access to protein foods. However, one of the challenges facing the private sector is to demonstrate the efficacy of FEI programmes in the face of limited information regarding consumer - psychographic characteristics including their attitudes, values, interests and beliefs. The aim of the study was to explore the salient beliefs underlying consumer attitudes towards FEI consumption in Kenya. To achieve this objective, six focus group discussions (FGDs) were conducted (n= 43), three with only female participants and the other three with a mixed gender. The FGD script was coded using the Theory of Planned Behaviour theoretical framework. The results show that, salient beliefs related to taste, availability, convenience, affordability and other benefits beyond nutrition, are the main determinants of the participants’ intentions to consume FEI. Intentions are also influenced by the perceived feelings regarding the social referents, including family members, peers, religious leaders and health officials; and perceived behavioural control factors such as perceived risks on their food choices, perceived convenience and availability. While designing local programmes to promote FEI consumption, participants support the idea of small groups, but expresses concern about the time of day (evening preferred), length and location of the group session. However, many participants are not receptive to receiving telephone messages, although they are open to the idea of receiving phone calls. The study findings provide unique insights, among them, cultural beliefs that underlies consumer attitudes towards consuming FEI. Additionally, the results suggest possible approaches and practical interventions that can be used to promote FEI consumption in specific regions of Kenya.
Foods from edible insects; theory of planned behaviour; Salient beliefs