Psychosocial and demographic variables associated with consumer intention to purchase sustainably produced foods as defined by the Midwest Food Alliance.

Journal of nutrition education and behavior

PubMedID: 12556270

Robinson R, Smith C. Psychosocial and demographic variables associated with consumer intention to purchase sustainably produced foods as defined by the Midwest Food Alliance. J Nutr Educ Behav. 2003;34(6):316-25.
OBJECTIVE
To examine psychosocial and demographic variables associated with consumer intention to purchase sustainably produced foods using an expanded Theory of Planned Behavior.

DESIGN
Consumers were approached at the store entrance and asked to complete a self-administered survey.

SETTING
Three metropolitan Minnesota grocery stores.

PARTICIPANTS
Participants (n = 550) were adults who shopped at the store: the majority were white, female, and highly educated and earned >or= 50,000 dollars/year. Participation rates averaged 62%.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES
The major domain investigated was consumer support for sustainably produced foods. Demographics, beliefs, attitudes, subjective norm, and self-identity and perceived behavioral control were evaluated as predictors of intention to purchase them.

ANALYSIS
Descriptive statistics, independent t tests, one-way analysis of variance, Pearson product moment correlation coefficients, and stepwise multiple regression analyses (P <.05).

RESULTS
Consumers were supportive of sustainably produced foods but not highly confident in their ability to purchase them. Independent predictors of intention to purchase them included attitudes, beliefs, perceived behavioral control, subjective norm, past buying behavior, and marital status.

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS
Beliefs, attitudes, and confidence level may influence intention to purchase sustainably produced foods. Nutrition educators could increase consumers' awareness of sustainably produced foods by understanding their beliefs, attitudes, and confidence levels.