Consumer acceptance of modern biotechnology is driven by a number of inter-related factors such as knowledge level, moral acceptability and perceptions of benefits and risks of modern biotechnology and trust in institutions of interests. Of the many variables studied by earlier researchers, it was found that moral acceptability was an important predictor or sometimes referred to as ‘a veto’ of support for biotechnology. The purpose of this paper is to examine how the Malaysian public in the Klang Valley region perceive the ethical aspects of Golden rice as an example of modern biotechnology product. Exploratory factor analysis has shown that ethical aspects of modern biotechnology comprised of five dimensions namely familiarity, perceived risks, denying benefits, religious and ethical acceptance. Results from the survey on 434 respondents has shown that the Malaysian public in the Klang Valley region were not very familiar with golden rice, perceived golden rice as having moderate risks and the benefits of golden rice to the society is perceived as moderately denied if it is not developed. The ethical aspects of golden rice were moderately acceptable to them and the transfer of carrot gene to rice was highly acceptable from their religious point of view. Analyses of Variances showed that familiarity, perceived risks, denying benefits and ethical acceptance significantly differed across stakeholders’ groups while the first dimension also significantly differed across age. On the other hand, no significant differences were found for all the dimensions across educational level, religion, races and gender.
|Keywords:||Perception, Malaysia, Stakeholders, Ethical Aspects, Modern Biotechnology, Golden Rice|
Associate Professor, Centre for General Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia
Post-graduate student, Centre for General Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia
Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Education, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia
Lecturer, Centre of General Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia