Understanding and guiding consumer behaviour of greenhouse products

Published on
May 30, 2023

Consumers are known to not reach their required daily fruit and vegetable intake. Measuring fruit and vegetable liking via visual methods can be done with the use of Central Location Testing (CLT) and In-Home Use Testing (IHUT), but might yield different results. This project has been: (1) Investigating new technologies to optimise visual sensory testing; (2) Understanding consumer behaviour in online and offline shopping settings; (3) Guiding consumer behaviour using social nudges.

Consumers visually assessed tomatoes using different methodologies: In-home use test with physical product, 2D images, virtual reality and 360-degree video. Using new technologies, such as virtual reality and 360-degree videos for visual product testing is promising, but is still resulting in lower liking and purchase intention scores compared to classic CLT.

Consumers were invited for online shopping (in-home use testing using 2D images) and offline shopping (central location test with physical product). Visual liking and purchase intention was lower for the online shopping setting compared to the offline shopping setting.

To guide consumer behaviour, consumers were exposed to negative and positive social nudges when assessing greenhouse products. Nudges are unconscious cues, such as texts and pictures, that can influence consumer behaviour. Positive social nudges resulted in a non-significant increase in purchase intention for the In-Home Use Testing, but no effect was found for the Central Location Test.

This project was financed by the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality and was part of the KB Healthy & Safe Food Systems programme.