Comparing Social and Intellectual Appeals to Reduce Disgust of Eating Crickets

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Sheppard, Barry
Frazer, Patricia
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Objective. Research on disgust, to date, has focused on general sensitivity. This experiment looks at disgust specific to eating crickets, how it can be reduced, whether there are differences with gender and whether age correlate with that disgust. Methods. A convenience sample of 352 participants completed an online questionnaire, were randomly assigned into groups who viewed an intellectual appeal (text) or a social appeal (video). They rated before and after, as a measure of disgust, their likelihood of eating a whole cricket and also a bar which contained cricket flour. Results. Members of the social appeal group had a significantly greater change in likelihood to eat a cricket bar (p = .028, BF10 = 3.92), but not a whole cricket (p = .316, BF10 = 0.13). Female participants were less likely than male participants to eat a whole cricket (p < .001, BF10 = 4828.84) or a cricket bar (p = .001, BF10 = 181.18). Older participants were less likely to eat a whole cricket (p = .01, BF10 = 4.98) or a cricket bar (p = .005, BF10 = 34.12). Conclusions. Results support the role of social influence in disgust of eating crickets. Author keywords: Psychology, Aversion, Emotion, Influence, Entomophagy