The role of personal values in Chinese consumers’ food consumption decisions. A case study of healthy drinks
Lee, Pui; Lusk, Karen; Mirosa, Miranda; Oey, Indrawati
Differences in culture, language, and behavior between Chinese and Western consumers make entering the Chinese market a challenge. Chinese consumers may desire similar product features (e.g. brand name, quality, and flavor) to Western consumers but the value that consumers attach to the same product may differ cross-nationally. Besides values, an understanding of desired product attributes and the consequences linking to these values is also important. To the authors’ knowledge, there is no published scientific research that investigates how personal values influence Chinese consumers’ food consumption decisions. The aim of this research was to identify the links among product attributes, consequences of these attributes, and personal values associated with healthy drink consumption decisions within the Chinese market. Specifically, this research employed means-end chain theory and used association pattern technique (APT) as the main data collection technique to identify these links. Focus groups (n = 6) were held in Hangzhou, China to identify the important attributes and consequences involved in the consumption decisions of healthy drinks. These attributes and consequences along with Schwartz’s 10 basic values were used to construct the matrices included in the APT survey. A total of 600 APT surveys were administered in six different companies in Hangzhou, with 570 returned. Construction of the hierarchical value map (HVM) identified four of Schwartz’s personal values influencing Chinese consumers’ healthy drink consumption decisions: security, hedonism, benevolence, and self-direction. Food safety was the foremost concern for Chinese consumers when choosing healthy drinks. Chinese consumers also sought a good tasting and nutritious drink that was good value for money. Results from this study provide food marketers with an in-depth understanding of Chinese consumers’ healthy drink consumption decisions. Implications and recommendations are provided that will assist food marketers to effectively enact marketing strategies in China.
Rights Statement: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2013.11.001
Keywords: means-end chain; Association pattern technique; Personal values; China; Food consumption decisions
Research Type: Journal Article