On linking socioeconomic status to consumer willingness to buy and pay for organic food

Abstract

This paper aims to examine the association between the consumer’s socioeconomic status and the consumption of organic food. A conceptual model developed in this paper provides a more detailed understating of how socioeconomic status can, through the perceived values of organic food, influence the willingness to buy and to pay. A sample of 384 consumers of organic food in Tunisia were interviewed using convenience sampling. The Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was used to test the hypotheses of the proposed conceptual model. The socioeconomic status of consumers (education, occupation and income) was found to be an important predictor of perceived organic food values (utilitarian and hedonic). While utilitarian value had a stronger influence on the willingness to pay, hedonic value proved more influential on the willingness to buy. This paper is one of the earliest studies of its kind, which focused on the association between socioeconomic status and organic consumption. Findings have provided clear ways for practitioners to segment their markets on the basis of the socioeconomic status of consumers.

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Correspondence to Zohra Ghali-Zinoubi.

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Ghali-Zinoubi, Z. On linking socioeconomic status to consumer willingness to buy and pay for organic food. J Food Sci Technol 58, 1042–1050 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13197-020-04618-9

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Keywords

  • SES
  • Utilitarian value
  • Hedonic value
  • Willingness to buy
  • Willingness to pay
  • Organic food