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EMAC 2023 Annual

Consumers' (lacking) self-determined motivation to reduce meat consumption

Published: May 24, 2023


Maureen Schulze, Copenhagen Business School; Meike Janssen, Copenhagen Business School


Meat consumption is associated with several sustainability and health issues, and thus a shift towards meat-reduced diets is urgently needed. However, in many countries, high meat intake is deeply rooted in the traditional dietary plan. The present research applied self-determination theory (SDT) to investigate consumers’ motivation to reduce meat consumption and, to explore how to ideally accelerate this transition in different consumer segments. Results of the applied latent class analysis are based on a representative sample of n=838 Danish consumers and revealed four distinct segments that differ in their self-determined motivation as well as willingness to eat more sustainable meal options. Thereby, this research contributes to accelerating consumers’ food-related behavioral change and provides a theoretical contribution by applying self-determination theory to the field of meat reduction.