Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Parham, Ellen S.

Degree Name

M.S. (Master of Science)

Legacy Department

Department of Home Economics


Color of food


The purpose of this study was to determine whether or not different colored lights influence attitude, acceptability, selection, and consumption of selected food items, such as fried egg, ham, roast beef, and peas. Various colored lights are available in the market. To determine which colored lights should be used in this study, a pilot study was conducted using eight light sources; incandescent, coolwhite fluorescent, warmwhite fluorescent, gold fluorescent, green fluorescent, red fluorescent, pink fluorescent, and blue fluorescent. Four individual food items, fried egg, ham, roast beef, and peas, were lighted by these light sources. Ten food service administrators were the subjects for the pilot study. Subjects viewed each food item on the cafeteria line and recorded their observations on the questionnaire provided, which included their attitude toward the food and their impression of the effects of light on each food item. The five lights, incandescent, coolwhite fluorescent, warmwhite fluorescent, red fluorescent, and gold fluorescent found to have most desirable effect by the judges, were used in the final study. The subjects in the final study consisted of 850 college students residing at Northern Illinois Residence Halls. Having viewed the various -lights on the test foods in the cafeteria line, they responded to the "Facial Hedonic Scale” which provided the statistical data for the attitude variable. They also indicated on a seven-point rating scale, the acceptability of the food under the lights. The data used to test selection and consumption variables were obtained with the use of plate-waste study. Statistical analysis of the data revealed that subjects' preferences for food were as follows: roast beef, fried egg, ham, and peas. The most acceptable light for fried egg was coolwhite fluorescent} ham, incandescent; roast beef, red fluorescent; and peas, warmwhite fluorescent; but the overall rank-preference on light acceptability tended to favor incandescent. Interaction of subjects' attitude on food with the acceptability of light sources was not significant. Both selection and consumption variables had very high positive correlation coefficients with acceptability.


Includes bibliographical references.


v, 62 pages




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