The current research focused on the (in)congruity between pictorial (ingredient item depiction) and textual (ingredient list) information on food packaging, namely, an apple–mango juice. Specifically, the influence of these information sources on expected and perceived flavor intensities, mismatched perceptions, perceived deception, and intention to purchase was studied by taking into account the possible moderating role of consumers’ thinking style. Three studies were performed, the first and third at a Dutch University by means of surveys and sensory tests, and the second via an online survey. The results showed that, overall, most consumers did not perceive the incongruity between pictorial and textual information as mismatching. However, a perceived mismatch from packaging, whether originated by the design manipulations or not, did increase perceived deception and lowered willingness to purchase. This effect was robust for both mismatches, among packaging elements (pre-consumption) and from expected and perceived flavor ratios (post-consumption), but was more substantial for the post-consumption mismatch. Although the moderating effect of cognitive processing style regarding expected and perceived flavor ratios from pictorial and textual (ingredient list) information was not confirmed, the results indicated that the effect of salient textual information is substantial, independent of a particular processing style or label usage.
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