Promoting taste helps make insect-based food more appealing

For some people around the world, insects are part of their everyday cuisines. For others, however, the thought of eating insects is unappealing. Advocates who support eating insects say that it offers health and environmental benefits, but a recent study found that this might not be the most effective way to encourage people to eat insect-based food. The results of the study found that promoting the enjoyable features of insect-based food is more effective than emphasizing the health and environmental benefits.

The study subjects were shown an advertisement for an insect-based food product that either highlighted the health and environmental benefits of the food or one that promoted the pleasurable aspects, including taste and claims of quality and luxury, of the food. Then the subjects were given the option to try a chocolate truffle made with mealworm. The results found that the ads promoting the health and environmental benefits were significantly less effective than those that touted the pleasurable aspects at making subjects more willing to try the mealworm chocolate truffle.