While the ethnic food market has become increasingly important in Italy, the effects of the hybridization of consumption patterns have been slowed by a consolidated culinary tradition. This study investigates the relationships among ethnic food consumption, food neophobia, and openness to different cultures with sociodemographic characteristics. A sample of 1317 Italian consumers responded to an online survey. The sociodemographic profile of the neophobic consumer appears to substantially differ from that of the consumer with an attitude of openness. Neophobic respondents are males, are older than 55 years of age, are less educated, have children, are retired, have difficulty meeting their financial responsibilities, and do not eat ethnic food. Respondents who are more open to different cultures are young adults, are highly educated, have no children, are employed, and are consumers of ethnic food. The relationship between food neophobia and openness to different cultures is confirmed to be the relationship between these variables and ethnic food consumption. The measurement of these characteristics could serve as a crucial indicator for analyzing the willingness to accept elements of novelty in an increasingly multicultural society. Additionally, consumers with the neophobic trait and who are less open to different cultures might have a less varied diet that is essential to good health.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited