The purpose of this paper is to explore young consumers’ attitudes toward novel organic food products by analyzing their acceptability and perception.
A mixed method approach was applied to conceptualize (sensory profiling of organic bakery and confectionery products) and then to evaluate young consumer’s willingness to buy (consumer survey) innovative products: ten variants of rolls and ten variants of shortbread cookies made of certified raw materials originating from bio-farming, enriched with a combination of fresh and dried fruits and vegetables. Product recipes were free of saccharose, sweeteners and chemical pulverizing agents. To evaluate consumer orientation toward novel organic products, 200 consumers from Poland (Warmia and Mazury region) were surveyed regarding their hedonic opinion about these concepts. A Likert-type scale was used in the consumer survey to assess the perception and declared willingness to buy the evaluated products.
Research results demonstrate that the young consumers had ambivalent or negative attitudes to sensory attributes of many variants of the organic bakery and confectionery products. This could be explained by the taste of most of the products, which appeared unacceptable to consumers. It has been concluded that the choice of organic foods by young consumers is not strictly related to the concern over their health nor to the awareness of health-related attributes of these food products. Taste turned out to be the key factor affecting consumer attitudes toward organic foods and driving their willingness to buy these products.
Despite the constant development of research in the area of the organic food market, the current scientific findings still have some cognitive gaps that concern attitudes and expectations of consumers, especially of young consumers, toward new ecological products. This study contributed to the young consumers’ behavior knowledge by analyzing their attitudes toward novel organic bakery and confectionery prototypes produced manually. The empirical findings from this study also have practical potential for organic food market applications. Information of this type is useful in understanding and predicting the demand for certain products, which helps managers develop effective strategies.
The study was conducted in the framework of fundamental studies conducted in 2016 for the benefit of bio-farming regarding the processing of food products of plant and animal origin with ecological methods, entitled: “Studies on the development of an optimal technology for the manufacture of bakery and confectionery products enriched with fresh and dried fruits and vegetables, meeting criteria set in item 1256 of the Regulation of the Minister of Health of 28 August 2015,” decision of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development No. HOR-re-msz-078-8/16 (224).
Radzyminska, M. and Jakubowska, D. (2019), "The conceptualization of novel organic food products: a case study of Polish young consumers", British Food Journal, Vol. 121 No. 8, pp. 1884-1898. https://doi.org/10.1108/BFJ-01-2019-0006
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