Trust New Zealand

Photo of a supermarket checkout line

A National Business Review-Compaq poll comparing New Zealand consumer attitudes to genetically modified food in 1999 and 2001 found that people are becoming more positive about the idea of eating GM food.

The number of people who said they would eat food they knew to be GM has risen from 28 per cent in March 1999 to 35 per cent in March 2001.

Fewer people said no to GM food, down from 59 per cent to 56 per cent, and fewer people were unsure about GM food, down from 13 per cent to 9 per cent.

Half the people surveyed said they needed more information about the technology, and were still unsure about the issue.

Forty-five per cent of the undecided respondents said the risks of gene technology outweighed the benefits. A third of the undecided group said the benefits of GM outweighed the risks and 22 per cent were unsure.

Young people were more willing to eat GM food than older people, with 69 per cent of those aged 18-19 and 53 per cent of those aged 20-24 saying they would eat GM food.