The purpose of this study is to examine attitudes towards fish consumption, social pressure, fish preparation and cooking skills, sensory beliefs, health involvement and fish consumption in childhood as predictors of fish consumption among consumers in their early adulthood. While the impact of these factors on fish consumption has been examined in some extent among adult consumers, this is believed to be the first study where the focus is on people in their late teens and their early 20s.
A cross sectional sample of Icelanders between 17 and 26 years old (n=1,735) responded to a questionnaire. Structural equation modelling was used to estimate the direction and strength of relationships between variables.
The paper finds that attitude towards fish consumption, social pressure and fish preparation and cooking skills were correlated to fish consumption. Sensory beliefs and health involvement were also correlated to fish consumption, but this relationship was mediated by attitudes. Finally, there was a relationship between fish consumption in childhood and fish consumption but that relationship was mediated by sensory beliefs and attitude.
The number of external variables included in the model is limited and correlational methods were used to estimate the relationship between factors.
The decrease in fish consumption among young consumers is of concern. Understanding the role different variables play in their fish consumption habits can provide health authorities and managers in the fish industry with useful insights for strategies for increasing the intake of fish among young consumers.