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Sustainability 2017, 9(10), 1701; doi:10.3390/su9101701

Testing Consumers’ Preferences for Environmental Attributes of Pasta. Insights from an ABR Approach

1
Department TESAF, University of Padova, 35020 Legnaro, Italy
2
Faculty of Bioscience and Agro-Food and Environmental Technology, University of Teramo and ALISS, UR1303, INRA, F-94205 Ivry-sur-Seine, France
3
Department DISEI, University of Firenze, 50127 Firenze, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 August 2017 / Revised: 18 September 2017 / Accepted: 21 September 2017 / Published: 22 September 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
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Abstract

Consumer appreciation for food environmental attributes has recently gained in importance. The health-related attributes have received less attention in the literature, if organic farming products are excluded. We measure the consumer willingness to pay (WTP) for a traditional Italian product, pasta, when environmental and healthy attributes are added to it in turn. Relying on the prospect theory and on the bundling/unbundling debate, attributes cannot be perceived by consumers in absolute values. Accordingly, we assess if the way in which attributes are presented to consumers influences their WTP by comparing an “unbundling” approach—informing consumers of all product attributes and then subtracting one of them, to a “bundling” approach, progressively adding further attributes to the product’s description. To do this, we administered a questionnaire to a sample of households in North-Central Italy. WTP is elicited using an attribute based referenda format, slightly modified in accordance with our research objectives. The results show that Italian consumers, with the exception of specific subgroups, tend to prefer a traditional pasta product, probably because of both their taste preferences and eating habits. Some evidence emerged of an endowment effect, consumers valuing environmental attributes more when they feel themselves entitled to them. View Full-Text
Keywords: environmental attributes; health attributes; pasta; ABR method environmental attributes; health attributes; pasta; ABR method
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MDPI and ACS Style

Defrancesco, E.; Perito, M.A.; Bozzolan, I.; Cei, L.; Stefani, G. Testing Consumers’ Preferences for Environmental Attributes of Pasta. Insights from an ABR Approach. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1701.

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