Department of Management

Liisa Lähteenmäki

Impact of health-related claims on the perception of other product attributes

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Liisa Lähteenmäki
  • Piritta Lampila, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Finland
  • Klaus G. Grunert
  • Yasemin Boztug, Denmark
  • Øydis Ueland, Nofima, Norway
  • Annika Åström, SIK, Sweden
  • Emilia Martinsdottir, Matis, Iceland
  • Department of Marketing and Statistics
  • MAPP - Centre for Research on Customer Relations in the Food Sector
New EU legislation (EU Regulation 1924/2006) will allow a number of nutrition and health claims in food products. The objective of this research was to study how health claims affect consumers' perception of other product attributes. A survey with a total of 4612 respondents from the Nordic countries explored consumers' perceptions of attractiveness, healthiness, naturalness, tastiness and ability to reduce risk of disease by comparing ratings of products with and without health claims. Used claims varied in their benefit, active ingredient, claim structure and framing. The results showed that health claims had a moderate but mostly negative impact on the perception of other product attributes; the most significant impact was decrease in perceived naturalness. Consumers could also interpret the benefits in claims as intended. The wording of the claim had only small impact on the perception of the products, whereas earlier  market presence of the ingredient had a large impact: differences among the Nordic countries reflected the previous exposure to health claims. The findings from this study suggest that consumers do not imply other health benefits from health claims and the health claim per se is not likely to cause any unrealistic positive inferences in perceived product quality.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFood Policy
Pages (from-to)230-239
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2010

    Research areas

  • MAPP, Health claim, Healthiness, Product quality, Product attributes, Consumer, Attitude, Food choice

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