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Open AccessArticle

When A Combination of Nudges Decreases Sustainable Food Choices Out-of-Home—The Example of Food Decoys and Descriptive Name Labels

Department Education for Sustainable Nutrition and Food Science, Institute of Vocational Education and Work Studies, Technische Universität Berlin, 10587 Berlin, Germany
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Foods 2020, 9(5), 557; https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9050557
Received: 10 April 2020 / Revised: 24 April 2020 / Accepted: 28 April 2020 / Published: 2 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Consumer Preference and Acceptance of Food Products)
This paper reports results from three consecutive studies focusing on the comparison of the effectiveness of different nudges and their combinations to increase sustainable food choices out of the home. The nudges compared are the use of descriptive name labels (DNLs) for the most sustainable dish of a choice set (menu) and the decoy effect (DE), created by adding a less attractive decoy dish to a more attractive target dish with the goal of increasing the choice frequency of the target dish. In the literature, both nudges have been found to influence consumers’ choices. In the first study, six category names of sustainability indicators were deduced from a focus group. These were tested with 100 students to identify the most attractive DNLs. Study II, a randomized choice study (n = 420), tested the DE, the DNLs and a combination of the DNLs and the DE used on four different dishes in a university canteen. In study III, 820 guests of a business canteen voted during four weeks for the special meals of the following week (identical to the four choice sets displayed in study II). Results indicate that the combination of DNLs and the DE is not recommended for fostering sustainable food choices. Pure DNLs were more efficient in increasing the choice frequency of the more sustainable meal, whereas the decoy effect resulted in decreased choice frequencies. Regional and sustainable DNLs were favoured by consumers. View Full-Text
Keywords: descriptive name labels; out-of-home; catering; sustainable nutrition; food; nudge; decoy descriptive name labels; out-of-home; catering; sustainable nutrition; food; nudge; decoy
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MDPI and ACS Style

Ohlhausen, P.; Langen, N. When A Combination of Nudges Decreases Sustainable Food Choices Out-of-Home—The Example of Food Decoys and Descriptive Name Labels. Foods 2020, 9, 557. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9050557

AMA Style

Ohlhausen P, Langen N. When A Combination of Nudges Decreases Sustainable Food Choices Out-of-Home—The Example of Food Decoys and Descriptive Name Labels. Foods. 2020; 9(5):557. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9050557

Chicago/Turabian Style

Ohlhausen, Pascal; Langen, Nina. 2020. "When A Combination of Nudges Decreases Sustainable Food Choices Out-of-Home—The Example of Food Decoys and Descriptive Name Labels" Foods 9, no. 5: 557. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9050557

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