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The Mediated Influence of a Traceability Label on Consumer’s Willingness to Buy the Labelled Product

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  • Cosmina Bradu

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  • Jacob Orquin

    ()

  • John Thøgersen

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Abstract

This paper investigates the effectiveness of a new traceability label on consumer willingness to buy the labelled product and whether the effect is mediated by moral affective evaluations of the product. A between-subjects factorial design was used to test (a) the effect of a new traceability label on willingness to buy a chocolate bar, while controlling for different product features (health disclaimer, product quality) and (b) whether this effect was mediated through the consumer’s moral affective evaluations of the product. A broad sample of 1,064 ordinary Danish consumers was recruited for the study from the panel of an online sample provider (667 women, 397 men), age range 18–80 (M = 46.39, SD = 13.17). We found that the traceability label has a significant impact on consumer willingness to buy a chocolate bar. This impact is mediated by moral affective evaluations of the chocolate bar. Based on the dual process models of persuasion (HSM and ELM), we conclude that consumers mainly process the traceability label in a heuristic way, through a peripheral route, making a fast and frugal, affect-based judgment, rather than one based on elaborate reasoning. Being one of the first empirical studies on the impact of a traceability label on consumer willingness to buy a product, it provides valuable insights for businesses on the effects of a traceability label on consumer behaviour. In addition, it provides new insights on the process through which an ethical label influences consumer evaluations and purchase behaviour. This study is, to the best of our knowledge, the first to show that an ethical label influences consumer decision-making through activating a holistic moral affective evaluation of the offering, rather than through strengthening the consumer’s knowledge base for a more qualified reasoning process. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2014

Suggested Citation

  • Cosmina Bradu & Jacob Orquin & John Thøgersen, 2014. "The Mediated Influence of a Traceability Label on Consumer’s Willingness to Buy the Labelled Product," Journal of Business Ethics, Springer, vol. 124(2), pages 283-295, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jbuset:v:124:y:2014:i:2:p:283-295
    DOI: 10.1007/s10551-013-1872-2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Gunnar Gutsche & Bernhard Zwergel, 2016. "Information barriers and SRI market participation – Can sustainability and transparency labels help?," MAGKS Papers on Economics 201624, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Faculty of Business Administration and Economics, Department of Economics (Volkswirtschaftliche Abteilung).
    2. Niklas Egels-Zandén & Niklas Hansson, 2016. "Supply Chain Transparency as a Consumer or Corporate Tool: The Case of Nudie Jeans Co," Journal of Consumer Policy, Springer, vol. 39(4), pages 377-395, December.
    3. repec:kap:jbuset:v:143:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s10551-015-2764-4 is not listed on IDEAS

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