Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 84, Issue 1, pp 1–15 | Cite as

The Missing Link Between Corporate Social Responsibility and Consumer Trust: The Case of Fair Trade Products

  • Sandro Castaldo
  • Francesco Perrini
  • Nicola Misani
  • Antonio Tencati


This paper investigates the link between the consumer perception that a company is socially oriented and the consumer intention to buy products marketed by that company. We suggest that this link exists when at least two conditions prevail: (1) the products sold by that company comply with ethical and social requirements; (2) the company has an acknowledged commitment to protect consumer rights and interests. To test these hypotheses, we conducted a survey among the clients of retail chains offering Fair Trade products. The results show that socially oriented companies can successfully leverage their reputation to market products with high symbolic values.


consumer behavior Corporate Social Responsibility Fair Trade retail structural equation models trust 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sandro Castaldo
    • 1
  • Francesco Perrini
    • 2
  • Nicola Misani
    • 2
  • Antonio Tencati
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Management/CSR UnitInstitute of Marketing, Bocconi UniversityMilanItaly
  2. 2.Department of Management/CSR UnitInstitute of Strategy, Bocconi UniversityMilanItaly
  3. 3.Department of Management/CSR UnitInstitute of Technology and Innovation Management, Bocconi UniversityMilanItaly

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