Hemp foods were legalised for human consumption in the Australian market on November 2017. This provided an opportunity to explore differences in food choice attributes between hemp food consumer groups early in the diffusion process. An online questionnaire disseminated one year after the introduction of hemp foods employed the Food Neophobia Scale (FNS) and Food Choice Questionnaire (FCQ) as well as attitudinal questions on hemp. It was hypothesised that consumers would display attitudes consistent with acceptance of other novel foods, that is, early consumers of hemp would report lower food-neophobia and non-consumers would demonstrate a greater complexity of decision making. Additionally, it was expected non-consumers of hemp food would place a higher concern on hemp's association with the illicit aspects of hemp. Results were not as expected. Early consumers of the novel food reported higher levels of food-neophobia which was inconsistent with expectations and past research. However, greater importance was placed on health, mood, natural content, familiarity, and ethical concern. There were no differences between hemp and non-hemp consumers in their concern for roadside drug testing. Findings suggest the diffusion process may be advanced further than expected in consumers aware of hemp food's recently legalised status. Implications are discussed.
|Number of pages||8|
|Early online date||31 Mar 2021|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2021|