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Motivations to consume ecological foods in alternative food networks (AFNs) in Southern Spain

Sttefanie Yenitza Escobar-López (Institute of Agricultural and Rural Sciences, Autonomous Mexico State University, Toluca, Mexico)
Angélica Espinoza-Ortega (Institute of Agricultural and Rural Sciences, Autonomous Mexico State University, Toluca, Mexico)
Carmen Lozano-Cabedo (National University of Distance Education, Madrid, Spain)
Encarnación Aguilar-Criado (University of Sevilla, Sevilla, Spain)
Santiago Amaya-Corchuelo (University of Cádiz, Cádiz, Spain)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 18 September 2019

Issue publication date: 23 October 2019

355

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to identify the motivations to consume ecological foods in alternative food networks (AFNs).

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 150 questionnaires were applied; the questionnaire was adapted from Food Choice Questionnaire (Steptoe et al., 1995). Data were analyzed by means of multivariate statistics with factor and cluster analysis. In order to identify statistical differences (p<0.05), Kruskal–Wallis and Mann–Whitney nonparametric tests were performed.

Findings

Ten factors or motivations were found: social ecological concern, nutritional content, sensory aspects, certifications, naturalness, specialized consumption, trust in the seller, economic aspects, health and availability. Four groups were obtained and called: citizen consumers, in-process citizen consumers, conscious social consumers with no interest in certifications and conscious pragmatic consumers. It is concluded that differentiated consumers visit these establishments and their motivations are diverse, albeit they concur, to a varying extent, with the objectives of AFNs, finding a mixture of hedonic and ethical motivations.

Practical implications

This sort of works about specific places of consumption as well as specific consumers, in this case ecological, contributes to the development of future social research on other contexts, different consumers and products.

Originality/value

This sort of research has been carried out in various European cities, with a number of foods and over various sales channels; however, at present there is a debate around AFNs and the veracity of their goals. This way, the present work can contribute with an answer to whether the goals match the motivations of consumers.

Keywords

Citation

Escobar-López, S.Y., Espinoza-Ortega, A., Lozano-Cabedo, C., Aguilar-Criado, E. and Amaya-Corchuelo, S. (2019), "Motivations to consume ecological foods in alternative food networks (AFNs) in Southern Spain", British Food Journal, Vol. 121 No. 11, pp. 2565-2577. https://doi.org/10.1108/BFJ-01-2019-0051

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited

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