Dining in the Dark: How Uncertainty Influences Food Acceptance in the Absence of Light

Food Quality and Preference 24.1 (2012): 209-212

15 Pages Posted: 29 Jul 2014

See all articles by Brian Wansink

Brian Wansink

Retired

Mitsuru Shimizu

Southern Illinois University - Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville

Armand Cardello

US Army War College (DEP) - R,D&E Center

Alan Wright

US Army War College (DEP) - R,D&E Center

Date Written: July 26, 2011

Abstract

Environmental cues – such as sights – can influence food acceptance and food intake. Yet there are many situations – such as those involving deployed soldiers, night workers, and nighttime snackers – where such cues are masked by dim-light or darkness. This study examines how and why darkness negatively influences food acceptance and future intake and what can be done to mitigate any potential problem. The results show that ambiguous foods eaten in darkened conditions have a low level of acceptance which mediated by one’s uncertainty about the food. Using clear product information (on packaging, for instance) can reduce this uncertainty and increase acceptance and future intake. Interpretations of these findings are discussed and their implications are underscored for those situations where individuals often eat in dim light or in darkness.

Suggested Citation

Wansink, Brian and Shimizu, Mitsuru and Cardello, Armand and Wright, Alan, Dining in the Dark: How Uncertainty Influences Food Acceptance in the Absence of Light (July 26, 2011). Food Quality and Preference 24.1 (2012): 209-212, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2473743

Brian Wansink (Contact Author)

Retired ( email )

607-319-0123 (Phone)

Mitsuru Shimizu

Southern Illinois University - Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville ( email )

1 Hairpin Drive
Edwardsville, IL 62026-1102
United States

Armand Cardello

US Army War College (DEP) - R,D&E Center ( email )

122 Forbes Avenue
Carlisle, PA 17013
United States

Alan Wright

US Army War College (DEP) - R,D&E Center ( email )

122 Forbes Avenue
Carlisle, PA 17013
United States

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