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A Structural Equation Model of the Factors Influencing British Consumers’ Behaviour towards Animal Welfare

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  • Toma, Luiza
  • McVittie, Alistair
  • Hubbard, Carmen
  • Stott, Alistair W.

Abstract

Results of national and pan-European consumer surveys and the growth in the demand for so-called “animal friendly” food products suggest that consumers within the European Union show a high level of concern for the welfare of farm animals. This paper analyses the determinants of British consumers’ behaviour towards animal welfare using structural equation models (SEM) with observed and latent variables. SEM is a statistical technique for testing and estimating relationships amongst variables, using a combination of statistical data and qualitative causal assumptions. We used a data set collected in 2005 through face-to-face interviews of 654 consumers in England. We analysed the range of statements in existing literature on consumers’ behaviour towards animal welfare and then used SEM to test and estimate these a priori determinants of behaviour. The models include observed and latent variables representing behaviour (stated purchases of free-range and organic chicken meat) and its underlying determinants (attitudes towards animal welfare and socio-economic factors). The models have an adequate overall fit to the data. The significance tests for the structural equation model on free-range chicken meat purchasing behaviour show socioeconomic group, education, attitudes towards animal welfare, reasons for buying chicken meat, access to information on animal welfare issues, number of children and price as significant determinants. All of these (with the exception of reasons for buying chicken meat) were found significant also in the model on organic chicken meat purchasing behaviour.

Suggested Citation

  • Toma, Luiza & McVittie, Alistair & Hubbard, Carmen & Stott, Alistair W., 2009. "A Structural Equation Model of the Factors Influencing British Consumers’ Behaviour towards Animal Welfare," 113th Seminar, September 3-6, 2009, Chania, Crete, Greece 58149, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:eaa113:58149
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/58149
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Zhao, Shuoli & Yue, Chengyan & Wang, Yumeng, 2016. "How Information Affects Consumer Acceptance of Nano-packaged Food Products," 2016 Annual Meeting, July 31-August 2, 2016, Boston, Massachusetts 235602, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    2. Adelina Gschwandtner, 2014. "The Organic Food Premium: A Canterbury Tale," Studies in Economics 1411, School of Economics, University of Kent.
    3. Sophie de Graaf & Filiep Vanhonacker & Ellen J. Van Loo & Jo Bijttebier & Ludwig Lauwers & Frank A. M. Tuyttens & Wim Verbeke, 2016. "Market Opportunities for Animal-Friendly Milk in Different Consumer Segments," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 8(12), pages 1-17, December.
    4. Hartmann, Monika & Simons, Johannes, 2015. "The Farm Animal Welfare - Dilemma: Can concerted Action of the Value Chain be a solution?," 148th Seminar, November 30-December 1, 2015, The Hague, The Netherlands 229280, European Association of Agricultural Economists.

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