You Shop with your Eyes First: Using the Feature-Positive Effect to Modify Existing Shelf Labelling Systems and Help Consumers make Healthy Choices

Torres, Mitchell
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University of Guelph

With increasing obesity rates, front of package (FOP) nutrition labelling, has been getting interest as a method to nudge consumers towards healthier choices. This study used consumer behaviour theories along with recommendations from previous studies to try to improve the effectiveness of FOP labelling systems on the healthfulness of consumer choices. A proposed labelling system was devised that added a cue so the FOP system was noticeable on all products. This was meant to reduce the chance of consumers overlooking the fact that the FOP system is not referenced on unhealthy food labels. Subjects completed an online grocery shopping task and short survey. Results did not support the effectiveness of the proposed system, but showed there may be some situational use for it. More data is needed from a wider sample group, with more product selection before any definitive recommendations are made.

feature-positive effect, shelf labelling systems, customer selection, healthy choices