This study aims to examine the importance that different intrinsic and extrinsic attributes represent for young Italian consumers of honey, analysing how these aspects influence the quality perceived during consumption. In addition, demographic and lifestyle aspects have been considered as possible discriminants influencing millennial generation honey consumers.
The authors performed a non-parametric rank-based test (Mann–Whitney U test) to analyse which attributes millennials value most, relating these to gender, sports activity or rural and urban origin. Then, to identify consumption patterns, principal component analysis, applying Kaiser normalisation and varimax rotation, was used.
This study confirms the remarkable sensitivity of the millennials towards environmental sustainability aspects. This attribute of choice seems particularly important for a clearly identifiable segment of the sample examined, represented by women who regularly practice sports and who come from urban areas. This result makes it possible to identify a type of consumer who, from early adulthood, is mindful of their lifestyle and ecological footprint. Moreover, it emerges that the most important attributes during purchasing are those related to label information, local product and origin, highlighting the awareness of young people and their maturity in the consumption of agro-food products.
The authors identified a trend in consumption that diverges from the classic patterns based on brand and the intrinsic characteristics of honey, but which forges new pathways more closely intertwined with the aspects of sustainability and the relationship with the territory, in addition to food safety.
Funding: This research was funded by the European Union within the research project: INTERREG V-A France-Italie (ALCOTRA) (2014-2020)–“INNOV’API (n. 1580)–Innovation sanitaire pour la durabilitédes exploitations apicoles”.Conflicts of interest: The authors declare no conflict of interest.
Blanc, S., Zanchini, R., Di Vita, G. and Brun, F. (2021), "The role of intrinsic and extrinsic characteristics of honey for Italian millennial consumers", British Food Journal, Vol. 123 No. 6, pp. 2183-2198. https://doi.org/10.1108/BFJ-07-2020-0622
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