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‘Both fascinating and disturbing’: Consumer responses to 3D food printing and implications for food activism

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Abstract

Food activism often involves challenging established modes of food production and consumption, which may mean looking for unusual alternatives to food production and promoting unfamiliar ingredients or modes of preparing and processing materials for human consumption as acceptable and valuable. In this chapter, we address the topic of 3D printed food – edible products fabricated using digital devices and software – and its implications for food activism. The production of 3D printed food has the potential to address some of the challenges targeted by food activists, including alleviating world hunger, improving food sustainability and reducing food waste. These possible uses of 3D printing technologies are currently in the development, experimental or speculative stage. These technologies offer the opportunity to examine how innovative modes of processing and preparing foods are greeted by members of the public. Discerning consumers’ responses to emerging technologies when they are still largely little known and in the innovation phase of development can serve to explore how such responses are formed before familiarity develops, as well as helping to anticipate emerging social or political issues (Marcu et al., 2015).

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APA

Lupton, D., & Turner, B. (2017). ‘Both fascinating and disturbing’: Consumer responses to 3D food printing and implications for food activism. In Digital Food Activism (pp. 151–167). Taylor and Francis. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781315109930_8

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