This study aims to analyse the influence of information on consumers’ liking and sensory perceptions. A sample of 301 Italian consumers of organic food products participated in a survey performed from November 2010 to January 2011. Consumers were recruited according to age, gender and frequency of consumption of organic foods (they were divided into light and heavy users). Consumers stated their preferences for “core organic” attributes, labels and information on food products and performed blind tests and branded tests on strawberry yogurt and cookies. In the branded tests, sensory test was combined with provision of different information, such as ingredients and the organic logo. Overall liking and sensory perceptions were elicited after blind tasting and after tasting of labelled products. Data was analysed by using descriptive analysis, an independent T-test and a paired T-Test. Stated preferences revealed that consumers appreciate “core organic” attributes, like artisanal production and variability of products’ sensory attributes; heavy and light users show significant differences in preference for whole grain products. Considering labels and information on food products, heavy users appeared to be more familiar with label reading, thus implying higher awareness about usefulness of information delivered on labels. Comparing blind and branded tests, results showed that information affects the overall liking of products and consumers’ perception of product specific sensory attributes; moreover, we cannot find significant differences in the way heavy and light users are affected by information. In conclusion, the survey showed that the influence of food product information on sensory perceptions depends on product category, sensory attributes and the type of information provided. These findings suggest that information (e.g. ingredients, logos, etc.) could be used by the food industry to fill the gap between consumers taste expectations and their actual experience.

Does Information Affect Sensory Perceptions? Evidence from Italian Organic Food Consumers Survey

CANAVARI, MAURIZIO;PIGNATTI, ERIKA;WONGPRAWMAS, RUNGSARAN;ASIOLI, DANIELE
2012

Abstract

This study aims to analyse the influence of information on consumers’ liking and sensory perceptions. A sample of 301 Italian consumers of organic food products participated in a survey performed from November 2010 to January 2011. Consumers were recruited according to age, gender and frequency of consumption of organic foods (they were divided into light and heavy users). Consumers stated their preferences for “core organic” attributes, labels and information on food products and performed blind tests and branded tests on strawberry yogurt and cookies. In the branded tests, sensory test was combined with provision of different information, such as ingredients and the organic logo. Overall liking and sensory perceptions were elicited after blind tasting and after tasting of labelled products. Data was analysed by using descriptive analysis, an independent T-test and a paired T-Test. Stated preferences revealed that consumers appreciate “core organic” attributes, like artisanal production and variability of products’ sensory attributes; heavy and light users show significant differences in preference for whole grain products. Considering labels and information on food products, heavy users appeared to be more familiar with label reading, thus implying higher awareness about usefulness of information delivered on labels. Comparing blind and branded tests, results showed that information affects the overall liking of products and consumers’ perception of product specific sensory attributes; moreover, we cannot find significant differences in the way heavy and light users are affected by information. In conclusion, the survey showed that the influence of food product information on sensory perceptions depends on product category, sensory attributes and the type of information provided. These findings suggest that information (e.g. ingredients, logos, etc.) could be used by the food industry to fill the gap between consumers taste expectations and their actual experience.
2012
A Sense of Inspiration - 5th European Conference on Sensory and Consumer Research
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Canavari M.; Pignatti E.; Wongprawmas R.; Asioli D.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/127480
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