Volume 36 - Number 2 - 1995 | DOI: 10.5032/jae.1995.02044

 

Abstract:

This study was conducted to assess the knowledge and perception of rural and urban adults in a midwestern state regarding agriculture, food, and natural resources. Since this study was a pilot project, these two subgroups of the United States population were assessed to provide baseline data reflecting the knowledge and perceptions of United States residents regarding agriculture and the food industry. Data were collected from 886 respondents but did not constitute a representative sample of all United States citizens. However, the results of this study may have implications for other groups on a practical basis. Three objectives were specified for this study as follows: 1) To assess the level of agricultural knowledge among rural and urban adults in a midwestern state; 2) To assess the level of agricultural perceptions among rural and urban adults in a midwestern state; 3) To describe the demographic variables of both subgroups that may influence their knowledge or perceptions of agriculture. Both groups of adult respondents were most knowledgeable about the Animals concept and least knowledgeable about the Plants in Agriculture concept. Respondents were most positive about the Natural Resources concept and were the least positive about the Agricultural Policy concept. However, rural adults were also very positive about the Animals concept. Respondents living on farms were more knowledgeable about agriculture than their rural non-farm neighbors, who were more knowledgeable than their urban counterparts. Respondents with high levels of education were more knowledgeable about agriculture than those with less education.

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