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Scientific Magazines: Esic Market

Num. 166 Vol 51, Issue 2
Consumer?s perceptions of organic foods in Ambato, Ecuador
DOI: 10.7200/esicm.166.0512.1

Juan Carlos Castro Analuiza, ORCID: 0000-0002-5371-9727; Cristina Checa Morales, ORCID: 0000-0002-7198-4161; José Perea, ORCID: 0000-0002-7496-6794

Received: 10-12-2019
Accepted: 22-04-2020
Published: 20-05-2020

Objective: The aim of this study was to identify the factors that explain consumers purchasing behavior towards organic food products in Ambato (Ecuador).

Methodology: Data were collected a survey of 1,500 organic consumers and other 1,500 consumers who prefer conventional foods, and analyzed using multivariate techniques.

Results: Principal component analysis identified four factors which explain the buying behavior of organic consumers: Belief in health benefits, quality and taste attributes; belief in environmental benefits; and contextual issues. Cluster analysis identified three groups of organic consumers: organic consumers interested in self benefit and highly influenced by contextual aspects (Group I), organic consumers interested in expected environment benefits (Group II) and organic consumers very interested in self benefits and less affected by contextual aspects (Group III). The relationships established in organic consumers are different to conventional consumers. This defines different variables that explain the purchase process. The socio-demographics profiles were different in gender and occupation; women and free license workers were more frequently interested in buying organic foods.

Limitations: The study was carried out in the city of Ambato that could be considered representative of the Ecuadorian urban society. The results should be complemented by future studies focused on other cities or rural areas.

Practical implications: Results suggest that the Ecuadorian organic sector follows the developing patterns identified in the Western countries. This implies that the promotion and practical support for the organic sector should be focused on strengthening positive attitudes towards organic purchases.

Keywords: Buying behaviour; consumer preferences; intention to purchase; decision making; organic production.

JEL Code: M21, M31.


Juan Carlos Castro Analuiza, Cristina Checa, & José Perea (2020). Consumer’s perceptions of organic foods in Ambato, Ecuador, Esic Market Economics and Business Journal, 51(2), 263-279. Doi: 10.7200/esicm.166.0512.1

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