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Food product attributes guiding purchasing choice of maize meal by low-income South African consumers


  • Sara Duvenage
  • Hettie Schonfeldt
  • Rozanne Kruger


This study ascertained the food product attributes prioritised by low-income and very low-income consumers when purchasing their staple food, maize meal. Survey results from 502 Gauteng respondents in three informal settlements and one formal settlement revealed the level of importance perceived for 14 predetermined attributes. The informal settlement consumers' ratings for product acceptability and convenience closely matched those of the formal settlement, but the more affluent respondents gave them higher ratings. The ratings for appearance, value for money, product quality, texture, product safety, brand loyalty and nutrient content were significantly similar between the two low and between the two very low income groups, but significantly different between the former two and the latter two, specifically for nutrient content. The informal settlements rated satiety value and affordability as the most important, while the formal settlement reported taste and appearance. These findings represent both a challenge and an opportunity for food product developers.

Suggested Citation

  • Sara Duvenage & Hettie Schonfeldt & Rozanne Kruger, 2010. "Food product attributes guiding purchasing choice of maize meal by low-income South African consumers," Development Southern Africa, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 27(3), pages 309-331.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:deveza:v:27:y:2010:i:3:p:309-331 DOI: 10.1080/0376835X.2010.498940

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Johan Fourie, 2006. "Economic Infrastructure: A Review Of Definitions, Theory And Empirics," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 74(3), pages 530-556, September.
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    4. Limao, Nuno & Venables, Anthony J., 1999. "Infrastructure, geographical disadvantage, and transport costs," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2257, The World Bank.
    5. Peter Perkins & Johann Fedderke & John Luiz, 2005. "An Analysis Of Economic Infrastructure Investment In South Africa," South African Journal of Economics, Economic Society of South Africa, vol. 73(2), pages 211-228, June.
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