This study examines the food-related behaviour of college students by focusing on a grocery context. Qualitative techniques were combined with a survey on 457 Italian college students. Findings revealed that college students have a conscious approach towards food. In spite of their limited income and time constraints, they prefer high-quality fresh foods and they are willing to devote time and care to store choice and food selection. This affects food shopping practices, which tend to rely on a central route process as theorised by the Elaboration Likelihood Model, thus revealing high involvement of this target with food purchasing. The study provides theoretical implications for understanding the food behaviour of college students from a marketing perspective, whereas previous studies usually assumed medical or nutritional perspectives. Moreover, it contributes to the theoretical debate on individual involvement with food, by showing that food can be considered as a high-involvement product among college students. Practical implications are derived for retailers. Notably, the analysis highlights the importance to provide product quality, service, assortment and convenience (both monetary and non-monetary) when addressing college students. Additionally, it suggests in-store initiatives that can be developed to maintain and enhance the customer involvement with food over time.

Food Attitudes and factors Affecting Food Behaviour of Italian College Students in a Grocery Context

Savelli E.
;
Bravi L.;Ferrero G.;Gabbianelli L.;Pencarelli T.
2021

Abstract

This study examines the food-related behaviour of college students by focusing on a grocery context. Qualitative techniques were combined with a survey on 457 Italian college students. Findings revealed that college students have a conscious approach towards food. In spite of their limited income and time constraints, they prefer high-quality fresh foods and they are willing to devote time and care to store choice and food selection. This affects food shopping practices, which tend to rely on a central route process as theorised by the Elaboration Likelihood Model, thus revealing high involvement of this target with food purchasing. The study provides theoretical implications for understanding the food behaviour of college students from a marketing perspective, whereas previous studies usually assumed medical or nutritional perspectives. Moreover, it contributes to the theoretical debate on individual involvement with food, by showing that food can be considered as a high-involvement product among college students. Practical implications are derived for retailers. Notably, the analysis highlights the importance to provide product quality, service, assortment and convenience (both monetary and non-monetary) when addressing college students. Additionally, it suggests in-store initiatives that can be developed to maintain and enhance the customer involvement with food over time.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11576/2663605
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