Green Products Recognition, Understanding, and Preference: The Case of Coffee Eco-Labels

37 Pages Posted: 27 Dec 2017

See all articles by Magali A. Delmas

Magali A. Delmas

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)

Robert Clements

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA)

Date Written: December 21, 2017

Abstract

We conducted a survey to gauge consumer awareness, understanding, and preferences for coffee eco-labeling. The survey covers the following labels: Rainforest Alliance Certified, Fair Trade Certified, USDA Organic, Bird Friendly and UTZ. The results, based on more than 800 responses, show that the USDA Organic label was the most recognized, followed by Fair Trade, Rainforest Alliance, Bird Friendly, and lastly UTZ. Rainforest Alliance, Bird Friendly, and UTZ were the least understood eco-labels. Respondents were given definitions of each eco-label and then asked how appealing certain components of the coffee certification are. They rated each component on a scale of 1 (not appealing) to 7 (very appealing). “Environmental sustainability” had the highest average response, followed by “no pesticides”, “social justice”, “animal welfare”, “birds”, and lastly “third-party certification.” The descriptions of the Fair Trade and USDA Organic labels had a positive effect on respondents’ willingness to make future purchases of coffee products displaying these labels. The description of the UTZ label had the least enthusiastic response. Generally, the majority of respondents reacted favorably, indicating they were likely, very likely, or extremely likely to purchase coffee from any of the five labels after having read a description of what the labels represent. Participants were also asked about their attitudes towards the environment and their perceived altruism using the New Economic Paradigm (NEP) and the Altruism (ALT) scales.

Keywords: Ecolabels, Green products, New Economic Paradigm, Altruism, Coffee

JEL Classification: Q, D1, D03, M3

Suggested Citation

Delmas, Magali A. and Clements, Robert, Green Products Recognition, Understanding, and Preference: The Case of Coffee Eco-Labels (December 21, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3091882 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3091882

Magali A. Delmas (Contact Author)

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) ( email )

405 Hilgard Avenue
Box 951361
Los Angeles, CA 90095
United States

Robert Clements

University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) ( email )

405 Hilgard Avenue
Box 951361
Los Angeles, CA 90095
United States

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