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Article

Sidse Schoubye Andersen and Lotte Holm

This paper aims to present an analysis of the various dimensions of naturalness that shape the consumption practices of parents with young children.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to present an analysis of the various dimensions of naturalness that shape the consumption practices of parents with young children.

Design/methodology/approach

The study builds on semi-structured interviews with 17 mothers and fathers focusing on parental decision-making in everyday consumption from pregnancy to the first years of the child’s life.

Findings

Naturalness is a tool allowing parents to navigate in a world of risks and part of an everyday consumption practice that constructs and maintains children as vulnerable and parents as responsible. Parents perceive naturalness as something with three dimensions: familiarity, purity and culture. These three dimensions lead to different parental practices around consumption.

Originality/value

The analysis contributes to the authors’ understanding of parenting, childhood, risk, safety and consumption by showing how and why parents of young children construct naturalness as a three-dimensional ideal in their consumption practices.

Details

Young Consumers, vol. 19 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1747-3616

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Article

Sarah Hemmerling, Maurizio Canavari and Achim Spiller

The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into European organic consumers’ attitudes towards natural food and in their sensory preference for it. It explores…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide insights into European organic consumers’ attitudes towards natural food and in their sensory preference for it. It explores whether there is any evidence for a latent dimension that represents consumers’ attitudes towards naturalness and which aspects can be assigned to this dimension. However, the main scope is to investigate whether attitudes towards naturalness are able to predict the liking of natural food.

Design/methodology/approach

Sensory tests of strawberry yoghurt are combined with consumer information obtained by means of a standardised questionnaire. About 1,800 organic consumers from France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland and Switzerland were asked to blindly test two strawberry yoghurt samples that differed only in their absence/presence of an aroma additive.

Findings

On average, the consumers revealed a positive attitude towards natural food, but a negative sensory preference for the more natural yoghurt sample. Correlations between these two variables indicate that for most countries one cannot conclude that more naturalness-oriented consumers actually prefer the taste of more naturally flavoured yoghurts. This finding is interpreted as an attitude-liking gap.

Research limitations/implications

More research is necessary in order to clarify the reasons for the attitude-liking gap, since the authors can only speculate about these. Also, suitable data are needed to confirm the assumption made here that the naturalness of strawberry yoghurt can be determined by the degree of flavour intensity, especially against the background that the sensory skills of consumers are usually weak.

Originality/value

No attempt has been undertaken so far to test the claim that natural food products taste better and whether consumers with a positive attitude towards naturalness actually prefer the taste of a natural product over the taste of a more processed one. The present study attempts to fill this gap by exploring the preference for naturalness in a cross-national context.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 118 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Article

Clinton Amos, Jesse King and Skyler King

Past research has demonstrated a health halo for food product labels (e.g. organic), resulting in inflated perceptions of a product’s healthfulness (e.g. low fat). While…

Abstract

Purpose

Past research has demonstrated a health halo for food product labels (e.g. organic), resulting in inflated perceptions of a product’s healthfulness (e.g. low fat). While past studies have focused on labeling and related health claims, the health halo of brand names has scarcely been investigated. This study aims to address this gap by investigating the health halo of brand names featuring morality- and purity-signifiers.

Design/methodology/approach

The current research uses two experiments to examine the health halo of morality- and purity-signifying brand names on perceptions of nutritional and contaminant attributes. Mediation analysis is performed to investigate perceived naturalness as the mechanism for the brand name effects while moderated mediation analysis examines this mechanism across product types (healthy vs unhealthy).

Findings

The findings reveal that both the morality- and purity-signifying brand names produce a health halo on nutritional and contaminant attributes, regardless of product healthiness. Further, mediation and moderated mediation analysis provide evidence for perceived naturalness as the underlying mechanism driving these effects.

Social implications

This research highlights unwarranted consumer inferences made based upon food brand names and, thus has implications for consumers, public policy and marketing managers.

Originality/value

While much health halo research has focused on labeling, this research examines the health halo of two brand name types which symbolically convey either morality or purity. This research provides additional contributions by investigating perceived naturalness as the underlying mechanism for the effects and is one of the few studies to investigate the health halo for both healthy and unhealthy products.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

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Article

Torben Hansen

The paper proposes to investigate empirically consumers' quality perception of shrimps and cheese.

Abstract

Purpose

The paper proposes to investigate empirically consumers' quality perception of shrimps and cheese.

Design/methodology/approach

A sample of 320 respondents was included in an experimental design in which two food products, shrimps and cheese, two price‐levels, two levels of purchase involvement, and two types of physical surroundings, elegant and less elegant, were manipulated. The experiments included both simulated buying situations and simulated usage situations.

Findings

The research finds that in the buying situation both experiments perceived price had a positive effect on expected eating quality for high‐involved respondents but not for low‐involved respondents. In the usage situation the effect of expected naturalness on experienced naturalness was in both experiments stronger for high‐involved respondents than for low‐involved respondents. In addition, experienced eating quality positively affected respondents' pleasure‐feeling. The positive effect of experienced eating quality on pleasure‐feeling was stronger for respondents exposed to elegant physical surroundings than for respondents exposed to less elegant surroundings.

Research limitations/implications

This research concentrated on analyzing two food products, fresh‐shelled shrimps and solid cheese. This could mean that the results may suffer from a lack of generalizability. A large cross‐section of products ought to be studied to improve the generalizability of the results. Also, the manipulation of price and physical surroundings were confined to two different levels. Thus, this research offers no specific guidelines on how to set specific prices or how to establish specific physical surroundings for the purpose of manipulating, e.g. consumers' perceived quality.

Practical implications

The results emphasize that food producers and retailers, among others, should seek an understanding of consumers' quality perception process in relation to both the buying and the usage situation.

Originality/value

This paper empirically investigates consumers' quality perception in both buying and usage situations. Also, the paper includes purchase involvement and physical surroundings as moderating variables of the quality perception process.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 107 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

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Article

Phuong Thanh To and David Grierson

Proximity to nature is essential to a child’s development. Well-designed educational environments are crucial to supporting this proximity, particularly in the early years…

Abstract

Purpose

Proximity to nature is essential to a child’s development. Well-designed educational environments are crucial to supporting this proximity, particularly in the early years of schooling. The purpose of this paper is to measure children’s experiences of nature within three primary school spaces at various locations in Glasgow, Scotland. The methodology for measuring children’s visual and non-visual sensory experiences is developed to evaluate the connection between naturalness values and spatial environmental qualities across varying “Child–Nature–Distance” ranges.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach associates children’s multiple layers of sensory modalities with particular attributes of the spatial environment within primary schools to determine the level of naturalness that children experience, in both internal and external spaces.

Findings

The study finds that children’s experiences are significantly influenced by factors relating to urban setting, built environment master planning, architectural features and interior design.

Research limitations/implications

Apart from primary school architecture for children, this methodology could be fully developed to the comprehensive human–nature relationship under the impacts of physical features and societal of other diversified environments in a future study. However, the offering reasonable primary school architecture for a proper children’s multi-sensorial experience with natural environment cannot thoroughly established with a quantitative aspect by the present study only. More qualitative research is recommended to examine the process of altering from “cause” to “perceived” nature of users’ cognitions, attitudes and behaviours within the exposure proximity to nature.

Practical implications

The methodology for measuring visual and non-visual sensorial experiences of nature, and its application to children’s learning and leisure spaces within primary school architecture could offer a tool for assessing current schools, and evaluating future design proposals for new schools.

Originality/value

The authors argue that the applicationof this method can support design decision making for refurbishing schools at the micro level, and in planning urban development involving proposals for new schools at the macro level.

Details

Archnet-IJAR: International Journal of Architectural Research, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2631-6862

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Article

Joana Cesar Machado, Leonor Vacas de Carvalho, Anna Torres and Patrício Costa

This paper aims to study how logo design characteristics influence consumer response. Based on an in-depth literature review on consumer responses to logo design, the…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study how logo design characteristics influence consumer response. Based on an in-depth literature review on consumer responses to logo design, the authors included in this research one fundamental dimension of logo design, namely, naturalness and investigated the influence of the different types of natural logo designs on affective response.

Design/methodology/approach

In total, 96 logos were selected as design stimuli. The logos were previously classified, according to the naturalness of the logo design, as having an abstract, cultural or organic design. Responses were gathered through a survey in Portugal, including two studies with 220 participants.

Findings

Results show that naturalness is an essential logo design element which significantly influences consumer affective responses to the logo, and that natural logos are clearly preferred to abstract logos. Additionally, this research indicates that, within natural logos, organic designs are favored over cultural designs.

Practical implications

The findings presented suggest that affect toward unknown organic logos is at the same level as affect toward well-known abstract logos. This is a relevant finding from a managerial point of view, as familiarity, an essential cognitive response toward the brand that has a cost for the firm, can be replaced cost-free with unknown organic logos.

Originality/value

This paper is a first exploration of responses to different types of natural logo design. The results should guide managers in selecting or modifying logo designs for achieving a positive affective response.

Details

Journal of Product & Brand Management, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1061-0421

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Book part

Mara Miele

Greater attention to and anxiety about farm animal welfare emerged at the end of the 20th century, as worries over food safety and food quality (connected to the BSE, FMD…

Abstract

Greater attention to and anxiety about farm animal welfare emerged at the end of the 20th century, as worries over food safety and food quality (connected to the BSE, FMD, avian influenza and other epidemics) pushed farm animal welfare into public discourse and political debate. This chapter looks at one of the ways in which consumers’ concerns and anxieties about animal welfare are addressed by the Soil Association (the United Kingdom), whose standard is based on a scheme of production that endorses animals’ natural life in the case of certification of organic eggs in the United Kingdom. Drawing on STS approaches it addresses the processes of producing ‘naturalness’ as food ‘attribute’ (to borrow from economics) and how ‘the natural life of hens’ is achieved in the context of eggs’ production.

Details

Transforming the Rural
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-823-9

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Article

Ronaldo Parente, Janet Y. Murray, Yue Zhao, Masaaki Kotabe and Ricardo Dias

This study aims to investigate how relational resources, such as the buyer’s trust in its suppliers and the level of supplier involvement, affect the level of tacit…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate how relational resources, such as the buyer’s trust in its suppliers and the level of supplier involvement, affect the level of tacit knowledge integration capabilities (TKICs) of the firm, which, in turn, is hypothesized to affect business performance.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the dynamic capabilities theory and the relational view, this paper examines how TKIC, a special case of dynamic capability, influences business performance. The research context is the Brazilian automobile industry, in which firms are currently experimenting with modular production and increasing their interactions with suppliers. Using a sample of automobile suppliers, this investigates how relational resources, such as the buyer’s trust in its suppliers and the level of supplier involvement, affect the level of TKIC, which, in turn, is hypothesized to affect business performance. In addition, this paper examines the moderating effect of various communication media on the TKIC-business performance relationship. The findings confirm the importance of relational resources and TKIC on business performance. Finally, this paper explores various theoretical and managerial implications to encourage future research.

Findings

The results suggested that the two relational resources (supplier involvement and buyer’s trust) are important drivers of TKICs and that the level of supplier involvement in the production process mediates the relationship between buyer’s trust and TKIC. Moreover, this study found that TKIC leads to superior firm performance, but the degree of media naturalness does not seem to facilitate knowledge transfer. The results confirm that supplier involvement is a pivotal process in that the buying firm’s internal resources and the major suppliers’ resources and capabilities are combined to achieve a competitive advantage – TKIC.

Research limitations/implications

This study is subject to the typical limitations inherent in cross-sectional research designs using subjective measures. That said, this still has some important implications indicating that relational resources, such as buyer’s trust and supplier involvement, are critical in developing TKIC that “seize” opportunities from interfirm relationships and integrate knowledge across and within firm boundaries. Moreover, while knowledge management tools can resemble face-to-face interactions to the largest extent, the research suggested that it cannot substitute face-to-face communications in transferring tacit knowledge.

Practical implications

Managers deal with complex interactions and linkages due to tacit knowledge from components, systems and modules, which are critical in developing organizational capabilities. Relational resources are important strategic assets facilitating resource combination and coordination. Managers must coordinate among multiple sources of learning and partner with their suppliers at an earlier stage to develop the relational capabilities and efficiently steer the process of boundary redefinition. Finally, managers must have the ability to manage tacit knowledge within the interface with suppliers using organizational mechanisms (i.e. TKIC) to help them absorb external knowledge from their supplier network and integrate it with specific internal competences.

Social implications

Recent disruptive technological developments pressure organizations to become more flexible by requiring firms to adapt quickly to constantly changing markets and to have the ability to apply different resources and capabilities to specific unique situations. All this with a huge impact on the firm’s employees and society in general. Thus, interfirm relationships and the role of knowledge integration is especially crucial, given the current industry trend in favor of experimenting with innovative production methods (e.g. flexible manufacturing and modular production) that can help managers to rethink work conditions in a more meaningful and flexible for society.

Originality/value

While prior research treats integrative capability mainly as a mechanism that explains superior firms’ performance in an interfirm relationship, few research efforts have explicated what shapes TKICs. By examining the relationship between relational resources, TKIC and performance, this study fills this research gap and develops and tests a theoretical framework.

Details

Journal of Knowledge Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1367-3270

Keywords

Abstract

Details

Management of Environmental Quality: An International Journal, vol. 23 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1477-7835

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Article

Jaejoo Lim, Jim R. Wollscheid and Ramakrishna Ayyagari

Consumers often encounter issues of perceived ambiguity and performance risk when attempting to evaluate experience goods being offered online. Sellers try to alleviate…

Abstract

Purpose

Consumers often encounter issues of perceived ambiguity and performance risk when attempting to evaluate experience goods being offered online. Sellers try to alleviate this knowledge gap often seen in a medium of low naturalness by engaging in effective compensatory adaptation. This research theoretically looks into three primary aspects of compensatory adaption and their potential in securing communication of high-quality information between the online seller and consumer.

Design/methodology/approach

Utilizing survey data and structural equation modeling, this study tests the effectiveness of different aspects of compensatory adaption to alleviate the knowledge gap in a medium of low naturalness.

Findings

Drawing on media naturalness theory and the tripartite model of attitude, this paper identifies three theoretical components that significantly affect the effectiveness of compensatory adaption. They are information retrieval capability from the cognitive/logical aspect, information richness from the affective/audiovisual aspect and interactivity from the behavioral aspect. The effectiveness of compensatory adaptation proves to have a positive impact on perceived information quality.

Originality/value

To the best of our knowledge, this is the first paper in the information systems literature to examine the compensatory adaptation tools for effective transfer of information. This study contributes to the academics by providing three handles to improve effectiveness of compensatory adaptation toward information quality. We focus on three compensatory adaptation tools in cognitive/logical, affective/audiovisual and behavioral aspects, and this compensation perspective leads to three practical factors that affect effective transfer of information between online sellers and consumers. The result of this study complements the nomological network of the enablers and impediments of e-commerce.

Details

American Journal of Business, vol. 35 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1935-5181

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