Consumer decision-making for animal-friendly products: synthesis and implications

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Understanding how consumers’ concerns affect the consumer decision-making process is important for developing a market for animal-friendly products. This paper presents a synthesis of research on the role of animal welfare in consumer decision-making. Drawing on basic models and concepts from consumer behaviour literature, we present the findings along the lines of five phases of the consumer decision-making process: (i) need recognition; (ii) information search; (iii) information evaluation; (iv) purchase decision; and (v) post-purchase evaluation. Consumer decision-making about animal-based food products is routine, situational and sometimes irrational, instead of based on complete information. Consumers associate animal welfare with a higher quality perception and labels and high prices further increase the perception of quality. The findings have implications for stakeholders that aim to develop a market for animal-friendly products, like (coalitions of) governments, animal interest groups, retailers and brand manufacturers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-19
JournalAnimal Welfare
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • corporate social-responsibility
  • livestock production
  • price elasticity
  • meat
  • quality
  • welfare
  • associations
  • responses
  • policy


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