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Credibility Engineering in the Food Industry: Linking Science, Regulation, and Marketing in a Corporate Context

  • Bart Penders (a1) and Annemiek P. Nelis (a2)

We expand upon the notion of the “credibility cycle” through a study of credibility engineering by the food industry. Research and development (R&D) as well as marketing contribute to the credibility of the food company Unilever and its claims. Innovation encompasses the development, marketing, and sales of products. These are directed towards three distinct audiences: scientific peers, regulators, and consumers. R&D uses scientific articles to create credit for itself amongst peers and regulators. These articles are used to support health claims on products. However, R&D, regulation, and marketing are not separate realms. A single strategy of credibility engineering connects health claims to a specific public through linking that public to a health issue and a food product.

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Science in Context
  • ISSN: 0269-8897
  • EISSN: 1474-0664
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