Linking consumers’ food choice motives to their preferences for insect‐based food products: An application of integrated choice and latent variable model in an African context

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Mohammed Hussen Alemu, Søren Bøye Olsen

Consumers’ attitudes, perceptions, personalities and motives play important roles in shaping their food choices. These factors are not fully observed by analysts, so they should be treated as latent variables. A number of economic studies treat such variables as direct measures of consumers’ food choice behaviour, even though this might introduce measurement error and endogeneity bias. We investigate the latent link between consumers’ preferences and food choice motives (FCMs) in an African context. We use an integrated choice and latent variable (ICLV) model specification for data analysis to recognise the latent nature of the FCMs and address the measurement and bias problems. The data originate from an incentivised discrete choice experiment conducted in Kenya to elicit consumers’ preferences for insect‐based foods. Our findings show that consumers’ preferences and choices are influenced by their latent motivational orientation. The results illustrate the benefit of the ICLV approach in accounting for consumers’ latent preference constructs in food choice and valuation research.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Agricultural Economics
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)241-258
Number of pages18
Publication statusPublished - 2019

ID: 208571033