Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



Major Professor

Mary Jo Hitchcock

Committee Members

Bernadine Meyer, Walter Moran


This research was conducted to investigate food acceptability as affected by warm and cool fluorescent lights. Five food items were judged by college students on a cafeteria hot food line in Presidential Court Food Service at The University of Tennessee Knoxville. Choices of roast beef, hamburgers, green beans, mashed potatoes, and mixed vegetables held under cool and warm fluorescent lights were recorded.

All five foods lighted by a warm fluorescent tube were chosen in preference to the same foods lighted under a cool fluorescent light. The food preferences were significant at the 5% level between the two fluorescent lights when roast beef, hamburgers, mashed potatoes, and green beans were judged as determined by a chi square analysis.

Constructive criticism was offered by the students. Numerous negative remarks were made about all the foods under the cool fluorescent light source. This light source seemed to cast a green hue on all foods, especially meats. Others felt the roast beef and mixed vegetables appeared artificial under the cool fluorescence. Many complimentary comments were made about the foods under the warm fluorescent light source.

From the results of this study, it was concluded that food items appear different under a warm fluorescent tube as compared to being lighted by a cool fluorescent source. This research indicates that it could be possible to increase sales of prepared food served in volume by using warm fluorescent lights in serving and dining areas.

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