The thesis investigates the effects of personality traits and food values on food-related choices and behavior.
The overall findings of the thesis can be summarized in four points: (1) Personality traits influence the preference structure for food values. Openness to experience and agreeableness are associated with more altruistic food-related preferences. (2) The effects of personality traits on attitudes towards GM food are neither large nor consistent across products and samples. Food values are more important in determining the attitudes towards GM food. A large part of the resistance towards GM food seems to be based on perceptions that these products are less natural, less fair to stakeholders in the supply chain, more harmful to the environment, and bad for the welfare of animals. (3) Respondents’ food consumption patterns reflect their differences in personalities and food values. More open and agreeable respondents adopt the dietary patterns that they perceive to have lower environmental impacts, fairer towards farmers, processors, and retailers, and protect local production. (4) Food values have larger and more consistent effects on food behavior than personality traits. The findings of the thesis have several implications for developing influence strategies to communicate with the consumers, influence their preferences, and persuade them to adopt more sustainable food consumption patterns.