Segmenting Greek tomato consumers: policy and marketing insights towards a healthy diet

Eleftherios Alamanos (University of Lincoln Business School, Lincoln, UK)
Michael Bourlakis (Brunel University Business School, London, UK)
Irini Tzimitra‐Kalogianni (Department of Agricultural Economics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Thessaloniki, Greece)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Publication date: 12 April 2013

Abstract

Purpose

The study aims to examine consumer behaviour towards fresh tomatoes and to reveal the factors that influence consumption leading to an adoption of a healthy diet.

Design/methodology/approach

A consumer survey was carried out in Thessaloniki (Greece) and 337 self‐reported questionnaires from tomato consumers were used in the analysis. The major consumer segments are illustrated and interventions to promote tomato consumption are suggested.

Findings

The findings from principal component analysis indicate that the main factors that influence consumption of fresh tomatoes are: “nutrition value”, “organoleptic characteristics” of tomatoes and “eating habits” of consumers. A two‐step cluster analysis revealed three segments of tomato consumers labelled as “Tomato‐loyals”, “Sensorialists” and “Health‐conscious”.

Practical implications

The findings reveal the consumption characteristics of each consumer segment where tailored social marketing plans can be developed based on this work. The findings will be of interest to food marketers and food policy makers, as they can contribute to addressing obesity problems in Europe in general and Mediterranean countries in particular.

Originality/value

The paper identifies the underlying reasons for eating fresh tomatoes, which can lead to the adoption of a healthy diet and can support policies towards that. It also reveals new consumer segments and highlights differences between them. In addition, it highlights the interventions to increase tomato consumption of each segment. Finally, it employs a cluster analysis technique, two‐step cluster analysis, which has not been widely used in marketing research.

Keywords

Citation

Alamanos, E., Bourlakis, M. and Tzimitra‐Kalogianni, I. (2013), "Segmenting Greek tomato consumers: policy and marketing insights towards a healthy diet", British Food Journal, Vol. 115 No. 4, pp. 488-507. https://doi.org/10.1108/00070701311317801

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Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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