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Article

Ou Wang, Xavier Gellynck and Wim Verbeke

The purpose of this paper is to explore Chinese consumers’ perceptions in relation to both Chinese traditional and European food.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore Chinese consumers’ perceptions in relation to both Chinese traditional and European food.

Design/methodology/approach

A web-based free word association test was administered to 302 consumers in China. They were asked to give the first three words that came into their minds when they were presented with each of two stimulus words, “traditional food” and “European food”. Three researchers grouped the elicited words into classes and then into dimensions. χ2 association tests were used to assess and identify statistically significant differences in the frequencies of classes and dimensions for the two food concepts between socio-demographic groups.

Findings

The findings show that Chinese consumers define Chinese traditional food and European food through ten similar dimensions: Sensory appeal, Health, Origin, Marketing, Safety, Variety, Heritage, Symbolic meaning, Simplicity and Mood. Additionally, they associate Chinese traditional food with the dimensions Elaboration, Celebration and Habit, as well as link European food to the dimensions Convenience and New. Although ten dimensions are the same, obvious differences can be identified by comparing the classes for the two food concepts. Further, there are significant differences in the class associations for European food between age groups and in the dimension associations for Chinese traditional food between gender groups.

Originality/value

By using an online qualitative research method, this study is one of the first to address how Chinese consumers define both European food and their own traditional food in China, the largest East Asian country. The findings are particularly useful for the future development of traditional food products and for the future export of European food products onto China and even other countries in East Asia.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 118 no. 12
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Nguyen H.D. My, Ellen J. Van Loo, Pieter Rutsaert, Tran Huu Tuan and Wim Verbeke

The purpose of this paper is to investigate consumers’ willingness to pay for quality rice attributes in urban areas in the South of Vietnam, including organic and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate consumers’ willingness to pay for quality rice attributes in urban areas in the South of Vietnam, including organic and integrated pest management (IPM) as sustainable production methods, and claim about health benefits and fair farmer prices.

Design/methodology/approach

Cross-sectional data were collected in 2015 using a survey including a choice experiment (CE) (n=500). Generalized mixed logit models were estimated.

Findings

Vietnamese consumers are willing to pay a premium of 82 percent for organic rice, and 45 percent for rice produced using IPM, compared to conventionally produced rice. They are also willing to pay a premium of 95 percent for rice claiming to be rich in vitamins and other nutrients, and 50 percent for rice that guarantees a fair price to rice farmers.

Research limitations/implications

A hypothetical CE was employed. Future research using revealed preference methods is suggested.

Originality/value

This study makes a significant contribution to the limited existing literature on consumers’ valuation of quality rice attributes in the context of developing countries such as Vietnam. The study shows that rice, that is, sustainably produced using organic or IPM methods provides a promising avenue for rice producers. This study highlights that there is an added value for rice with credence attributes in relation to sustainable production methods, health benefits, and fair farmer prices in a developing country.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 120 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Jacques Viaene and Wim Verbeke

Discusses the restoration of consumer confidence in the Belgian meat industry through Sanitel, a traceability system that tracks products through the entire supply chain…

Abstract

Discusses the restoration of consumer confidence in the Belgian meat industry through Sanitel, a traceability system that tracks products through the entire supply chain. It is a prerequisite to an effective supply chain and quality management. Discusses the process in relation to the poultry meat industry in Belgium.

Details

Supply Chain Management: An International Journal, vol. 3 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1359-8546

Keywords

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Article

Karijn Bonne, Iris Vermeir, Florence Bergeaud‐Blackler and Wim Verbeke

The purpose of this study is to investigate the determinants of halal meat consumption within a Muslim migration population using the theory of planned behaviour as a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to investigate the determinants of halal meat consumption within a Muslim migration population using the theory of planned behaviour as a conceptual framework. The role of self‐identity as a Muslim and dietary acculturation in the host culture is explored.

Design/methodology/approach

Cross‐sectional data were collected through a survey with 576 Muslims mainly originating from North Africa and currently living in France. Data were analysed by means of independent samples' t‐tests, correlations and stepwise multiple regression.

Findings

A positive personal attitude towards the consumption of halal meat, the influence of peers and the perceived control over consuming halal meat predict the intention to eat halal meat among Muslims.

Research implications/limitations

Limitations include the use of a convenience sample and the focus on only two individual characteristics related to religious food consumption, namely self‐identity and dietary acculturation. Additional individual characteristics such as trust, values or involvement could improve the predictive power of the model.

Practical implications

Practical implications extend to food policy decision‐makers and food marketers who might pursue identity – and/or acculturation‐related strategies in their distribution and communication efforts targeted at the growing halal food market segment in Western Europe.

Originality/value

This study is one of the first studies investigating the determinants of halal meat consumption in general and a first application of the theory of planned behaviour within a food, religion and migration context, i.e. halal meat consumption decisions in a Muslim migration population in France. In general, this study indicates that the predictive power of the classic TPB in this very specific context is limited.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 109 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Filiep Vanhonacker, Themistoklis Altintzoglou, Joop Luten and Wim Verbeke

This study aims to gain insights into the relevance and market potential of fish origin (farmed or wild) among consumers in Belgium, Norway and Spain.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to gain insights into the relevance and market potential of fish origin (farmed or wild) among consumers in Belgium, Norway and Spain.

Design/methodology/approach

Cross‐sectional data were collected through a consumer survey (n=1,319), conducted in November‐December 2007 in three European countries: Belgium, Norway and Spain. The study describes personal and food characteristics, as well as consumer attitudes and knowledge related to fish origin. Further, these characteristics were analysed in terms of their impact on the choice of either farmed or wild fish, using bivariate analyses.

Findings

In general, European consumers have little knowledge or awareness regarding the origin of fish. This results in uncertainty in consumers' perception of farmed fish in particular. The study is in line with previous ones suggesting that perceptions of aquaculture and farmed fish are based more on emotions than on rational considerations. Still, the perception of farmed fish is positive in general. Consumers do not prioritise fish origin as an information cue, although variation is present between different consumer groups. Consumers of predominantly farmed versus wild fish did not have a very distinct profile, which corroborates with the only modest significance of fish origin as a product‐specific information cue during the fish purchase and consumption decision process.

Originality/value

The strength of the paper pertains to its international scope, and to the diversity of countries selected in terms of relevant variables. Also, the growing relevance of aquaculture as a fish production method and farmed fish as a food product makes results and findings of the study topical and of practical relevance.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 113 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Wim Verbeke

The paper reports findings and recommendations from doctoral research in Belgium. The objective is to present insights related to the consumer decision‐making process…

Abstract

The paper reports findings and recommendations from doctoral research in Belgium. The objective is to present insights related to the consumer decision‐making process towards fresh meat. A four‐component conceptual framework is proposed. Information required to investigate links and associations between different elements of the framework is collected through exploratory and conclusive research procedures, with data originating from consumer surveys and household panels. Major attention is paid to the impact of communication and information from mass media, as well as to the impact of socio‐demographic characteristics such as age and presence of young children in the household. Recommendations extend to livestock farming, the meat industry, government, mass media and future research. Key attention points include increased orientation towards satisfying consumer needs and re‐establishment of trust through the production of intrinsically safe products and reliable and effective communication.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 102 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Karen Brunsø, Wim Verbeke, Svein Ottar Olsen and Lisbeth Fruensgaard Jeppesen

The purpose of this paper is to investigate motives and barriers for eating fish among light users and heavy users, to discuss consumer evaluation of fish quality, and to…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate motives and barriers for eating fish among light users and heavy users, to discuss consumer evaluation of fish quality, and to explore the existence of cross‐cultural fish consumer segments.

Design/methodology/approach

Qualitative data were collected through six focus group discussions, three in Spain and three in Belgium. In each country, one group consisted of heavy users while two groups included light users.

Findings

The same attitudinal motives and barriers for fish consumption can be found in both countries and across user groups, even though fish consumption levels differ considerably. The main motives for eating fish are health and taste, while the main barriers are price perception, smell when cooking fish, and that fish does not deliver the same level of satiety as compared to meat. Big differences are found between countries and user groups with respect to preparation skills and the use of quality cues. Heavy users are very skilled in evaluating fish quality, especially those in Spain, while light users, especially those in Belgium, make seemingly irrational assumptions when evaluating the quality of fish.

Research limitations/implications

This study is based on qualitative focus group discussions in two European countries only.

Originality/value

This study explores and compares motives, barriers and quality evaluation among heavy and light fish consumers in two European countries. The paper yields valuable insights for further quantitative research into explaining variations in fish consumption, as well as for fish quality evaluation and fish market segmentation studies.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 111 no. 7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Filiep Vanhonacker, Zuzanna Pieniak and Wim Verbeke

This study aims to investigate consumers' perceptions and barriers in relation to fresh, frozen, preserved and ready‐meal fish products in a geographically diverse…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate consumers' perceptions and barriers in relation to fresh, frozen, preserved and ready‐meal fish products in a geographically diverse selection of European countries.

Design/methodology/approach

Cross‐sectional data were collected through a consumer survey (n=3,213), conducted in June 2008 in the Czech Republic, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Romania, Sweden and the UK. Items measured were self‐reported consumption frequencies, consumer perceptions of different fish product categories, and perceived barriers for increased fish consumption levels. Country specificities are discussed.

Findings

The overriding healthy perception consumers have about fish was confirmed, and contributed very strongly to the general perception consumers have about fish. Fresh fish was perceived the most healthy fish product, followed by frozen, preserved and ready‐meal fish products. Perception scores were highest correlated with self‐reported fish consumption in the Mediterranean countries. With the exception of Romania, perceived barriers only poorly explained self‐reported consumption frequencies of the different fish product categories. This finding is related to the possible influence of habit and tradition with regard to eating fish, to the absence of measures related to motivations or drivers to consume fish, or to the possibility that some of the perceived barriers reinforce each other. In the Mediterranean countries, fish consumption frequency is on a very high level, independently of perceived barriers and motivational aspects, and part of the traditional Mediterranean diet.

Originality/value

The strength of this study pertains to its international scope and geographical spread. Further, consumer perceptions and perceived barriers in relation to fresh, frozen, preserved and ready‐meal fish products have rarely been studied in parallel. Findings are relevant to support efforts on national and international level to stimulate or modify fish consumption, and to explore opportunities to trade fish products.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 115 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Zuzanna Pieniak, Wim Verbeke, Joachim Scholderer, Karen Brunsø and Svein Ottar Olsen

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact of consumers' health beliefs, health involvement, and risk perception on fish consumption behaviour in five European…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact of consumers' health beliefs, health involvement, and risk perception on fish consumption behaviour in five European countries.

Design/methodology/approach

Cross‐sectional data were collected through a pan‐European consumer survey (n=4,786) with samples representative for age and region in Belgium, The Netherlands, Denmark, Spain and Poland. First, the cross‐cultural validity and cross‐cultural differences in health beliefs, health involvement and risk perception in relation to fish have been tested. Next, structural equation modelling (LISREL) was used in order to simultaneously estimate the strength and direction of relationships between health beliefs, health involvement and risk perception in relation to fish consumption.

Findings

Health involvement links up indirectly with subjective health and with total fish consumption, in both cases through increased interest in healthy eating. Interest in healthy eating positively and directly influences fish consumption. Increased risk perception from fish consumption negatively influences consumers' subjective health, as well as consumers' total fish consumption. Finally, subjective health positively relates to satisfaction with life.

Research limitations/implications

This study focused on fish as a product category, and included only a limited number of attitudinal constructs.

Originality/value

This paper provides a unique model relating health beliefs, health involvement and risk perception to fish consumption, which has been tested and validated using a large pan‐European consumer sample.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 110 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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Article

Ou Wang, Xavier Gellynck and Wim Verbeke

– The purpose of this paper is to provide a picture of the current image and consumer beliefs of European food in mainland Chinese consumers’ minds.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a picture of the current image and consumer beliefs of European food in mainland Chinese consumers’ minds.

Design/methodology/approach

A web-based survey was conducted for data collection in December 2013 with 541 participants from two Chinese cities: Shanghai and Xi’an. The participants reported about the image of European food and characterized European food according to 14 items for product-related beliefs and 18 items for perceived profiles. Descriptive analysis, cluster analysis and partial least squares regression were employed for data analyses.

Findings

Findings show that European food has a unanimously positive image among mainland Chinese consumers. Three consumer segments were distinguished based on attribute beliefs about European food: a positive-beliefs segment, a negative-beliefs segment and an unfamiliar segment. The characteristics of typical European food consumers were high income, having long overseas experience, having visited Europe or living in a big and developed city. In addition, “safe” and “upscale” were the most important attribute beliefs driving mainland Chinese consumers to have a positive image of European food; while “unfamiliar” and “sweet” were the most negative drivers of European food’s image.

Originality/value

This is the first study to present information about consumer beliefs, general image and consumer segments in relation to European food in mainland China. These insights can help European food marketers to better understand mainland Chinese consumers and the current image of their products in mainland China so that they can develop effective marketing strategies for this huge and potential food market.

Details

British Food Journal, vol. 117 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0007-070X

Keywords

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