Department of Management

Impact of self-health awareness and perceived product benefits on purchase intentions for hedonic and utilitarian foods with nutrition claims

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  • Natascha Loebnitz, Stralsund University of Applied Sciences
  • ,
  • Klaus G Grunert

Making benefit cues explicitly available to consumers can mitigate the impacts of added product attributes, such as nutrition claims, from which consumers often infer negative meaning. Yet, food products also vary in the benefits that consumers value most; they regard taste as most important for hedonic foods, but performance as pertinent for utilitarian foods. This article presents three studies that examine how making perceived product benefits explicit affects consumers’ purchase intentions toward hedonic and utilitarian food products that feature nutrition claims. Self-health awareness may moderate this effect (Study 1), which also depends on the prime, whether of the product's underlying goal (hedonic vs. utilitarian) (Study 2) or of consumers’ own health motivations (Study 3). The results show that participants with high primed health motivation purchase hedonic food products with nutrition claims only if the product benefit is explicit. For utilitarian food products, the negative effect of the nutrition claim can be mitigated by making the perceived benefit explicit but only among participants with low self-health awareness. Priming thus can facilitate healthier food choices, though its outcomes depend on the type of food and self-health awareness.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFood Quality and Preference
Volume64
IssueMarch
Pages (from-to)221-231
Number of pages11
ISSN0950-3293
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

    Research areas

  • Benefits sought, Hedonic food, Nutrition claims, Priming, Purchase intentions, Utilitarian food

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