Buying seafood: Understanding barriers to purchase across consumption segments

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Birch, Dawn ; Lawley, M. (2012)

Most consumers have positive attitudes toward seafood and consider it to be an important part of a healthy and balanced diet. However when purchasing seafood, consumers also weigh up various risks which may act as barriers to consumption. In this paper, the findings of an online survey of Australian consumers (. n=. 899) which explored both drivers and barriers to seafood consumption are discussed. The primary focus of this paper is to explore the perceived risks of seafood consumption and how these vary across consumption levels. Perceived risks associated with seafood consumption include functional, social, physical, psychological, and financial risk. With the exceptions of physical and financial risk, perceptions of risk varied across regular, light and very light seafood consumption segments. Lighter fish consumers were more likely to perceive functional risk associated with being less informed and less familiar with fish, experience more difficulties with selecting fish, recognising if fish is fresh, and preparing and serving fish than more regular fish consumers. Regular seafood consumers were less likely than lighter seafood consumers to perceive social risk arising from other members of their household not liking fish. Moreover, regular seafood consumers were less likely to perceive psychological risks associated with unpleasant past experiences or unpleasant sensory qualities, such as not liking the smell of fish and not liking to touch fish. Based on these results strategies for reducing perceived risks as a means of stimulating fish consumption are proposed for further investigation. © 2012 .
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