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Portrait value questionnaire's (PVQ) usefulness in explaining quality food-related consumer behavior

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Purpose ‐ Schwartz's portrait value questionnaire (PVQ) has extensively been used in personal values research. The present paper aims to validate the 40-item PVQ typology, using a nationally representative sample of 997 consumers. The main objective of the survey was to investigate whether higher-than-average regular purchasing of quality food products (i.e. organic and PDO labelled products) coincides with stronger identification with specific PVQ values. Design/methodology/approach ‐ A questionnaire was distributed nationwide. Data were collected through personal interviews with 997 consumers. Confirmatory factor analysis and cluster analysis were the main analytical techniques used. Findings ‐ At the value-based segmentation level of the analysis, identification with the PVQ value domains decreased per cluster progressively and jointly for almost all value domains, a trend that led to the identification of five distinctive national consumer segments. The trend of stronger identification with security, universalism and benevolence that appeared at the sample level re-emerged for the "urban upper class", the "countryside class I" and the "countryside class II", which accounted for two-thirds of the overall sample and were the clusters with the most dynamic quality food purchasing profile. Research limitations/implications ‐ Despite the emergence of a clear relation between consumers' self-transcendence and security value similarity and higher-than-average frequency of quality food purchasing, quality food consumers did not form a separate and clearly diversified cluster if the PVQ inventory functions as a basis for segmentation. Future models should incorporate values together with intermediate-level constructs (e.g. beliefs and/or attitudes) when attempting to predict consumer behaviour towards quality food products. Originality/value ‐ The paper shows that while values can be used to meaningfully segment quality food consumers, there is still much to learn regarding the direct and indirect determinants of quality food purchase behaviour.
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Keywords: Consumer behaviour; Factor analysis; Food products; Greece; Questionnaires

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-02-15

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