SP B4: Consumer Acceptance of Foods with Ethical Labels

Ethical food labels such as Fair Trade certification, which signal certain positive social attributes in the production process, are gaining in importance worldwide, particularly in developed countries. Yet, their effectiveness and further growth potential heavily depend on consumer acceptance. This Subproject aims at analyzing issues concerning consumer acceptance of ethical labels and socioeconomic determinants. The research questions are similar to those pursued in B1, but the data and methods of analysis are different. While B1 uses stated preferences data, in B4 we build on revealed preferences. In particular, we will use scanner data from Germany and the US which include purchase information on ethically labelled products. Modeling choice behavior with actual purchase data opens the opportunity to factor in multiple influencing variables on product choice behavior while also accounting for heterogeneity and providing a novel contribution to the existing literature on ethical labeling.

Possible topics for doctoral research:

  • Factors influencing purchase behavior of ethical labeled food products
  • Modeling consumer heterogeneity for ethical products
  • Cross-category market basket analysis of ethical product purchases

Doctoral researchers involved:

Doctoral researchers of the second cohort:
Melissa Rymer

Doctoral researchers of the third cohort:
Mahmoud Ahmed

Principal investigators/supervisors:
Yasemin Boztug