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Consumer experiences of tomato quality and the effects of credence

Fernqvist, Fredrik (2014). Consumer experiences of tomato quality and the effects of credence. Diss. (sammanfattning/summary) Alnarp : Sveriges lantbruksuniv., Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae, 1652-6880 ; 2014:65
ISBN 978-91-576-8078-5
eISBN 978-91-576-8079-2
[Doctoral thesis]

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Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) is one of the most important horticultural crops and is produced, traded and consumed all over the world. For horticultural products, the concept of quality is an indispensably important factor in consumers’ decision-making process and choice. While production efficiency and other production and distribution related properties have been in focus within the tomato industry, less focus has been on consumer experiences and satisfaction with, for example, taste. Beside physical properties of a horticultural product, there are also other quality attributes, which are related to personal values or trust: so-called credence characteristics. For example issues regarding morals and ethics, individual considerations such as health and convenience, or preconceptions related to factors such as origin or production method. While the consumers cannot accurately evaluate credence characteristics, the expectations they generate have an effect on consumers’ perceived quality and sensory experiences. Labels of various kinds signalling credence characteristics play an important role in the modern food marketing system, as other links of trust and direct relations with the producers have vanished within the globalised food system.

In this thesis, Tomato is used as a reference product with the aim of explaining the multi- faceted notion of quality of horticultural products and its role in marketing. The aim is to provide an understanding of how the concepts of quality and consumer experiences and responses are related, with focus on consumers’ experience with taste.

The first paper in this thesis study consumer views on tomato taste and assesses the effect of chilling on taste. The second paper examines consumer views of some of the most common and important credence characteristics; origin and production method; and explores their effect on consumer liking. The third paper delves further into credence and the effect on consumer liking, and correlates consumer attitudes with experienced quality. The fourth paper is a literature review on recent published papers on the topic, and proposes a conceptual framework describing the effect of credence on consumer liking of food

Theoretical, methodological and practical implications are discussed. Possible future directions for horticultural marketing strategies are identified; for the horticultural sector in general and the tomato industry in particular.

Authors/Creators:Fernqvist, Fredrik
Title:Consumer experiences of tomato quality and the effects of credence
Series Name/Journal:Acta Universitatis Agriculturae Sueciae
Year of publishing :14 August 2014
Number of Pages:79
I.Fernqvist, F. and Hunter, E. (2012). Who's to blame for tasteless tomatoes? The effect of tomato chilling on consumers' taste perceptions. European Journal of Horticultural Science. 77(5), 193-198.
II.Ekelund, L., Fernqvist, F. and Tjärnemo, H. (2007). Consumer preferences for domestic and organically labelled vegetables in Sweden. Acta Agriculturae Scandinavica C – Food Economics. 4, 229-236.
III.Fernqvist, F. and Ekelund, L. (2013). Consumer attitudes toward origin and organic – the role of credence labels on consumers' liking of tomatoes. European Journal of Horticultural Science. 78(4), 184–190.
IV.Fernqvist, F. and Ekelund, L. (2014). Credence and the effect on consumer liking of food – A review. Food Quality and Preference. 32, 340-353.
Place of Publication:Alnarp
Publisher:Department of Work Science, Business Economics and Environmental Psychology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Associated Programs and Other Stakeholders:Z - SLU - Library > Odla mera
ISBN for printed version:978-91-576-8078-5
ISBN for electronic version:978-91-576-8079-2
Publication Type:Doctoral thesis
Full Text Status:Public
Agris subject categories.:E Economics, development, and rural sociology > E70 Trade, marketing and distribution
Q Food science > Q01 Food science and technology
Subjects:(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 4 Agricultural Sciences > 401 Agricultural, Forestry and Fisheries > Horticulture
(A) Swedish standard research categories 2011 > 5 Social Sciences > 502 Economics and Business > Business Administration
Agrovoc terms:tomatoes, food quality, consumer behaviour, marketing, agronomic economics
Keywords:Tomato, Consumer liking, Credence, Quality, Horticultural Economics, Marketing
Permanent URL:
ID Code:11405
Faculty:LTV - Fakulteten för landskapsarkitektur, trädgårds- och växtproduktionsvetenskap
Department:(LTJ, LTV) > Department of Work Science, Business Economics, and Environmental Psychology (until 2020)
Deposited By: Hortonom Fredrik Fernqvist
Deposited On:14 Aug 2014 11:17
Metadata Last Modified:16 Oct 2015 04:00

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