Application of behavioural economy principles in the grocery market

https://doi.org/10.17221/52/2009-AGRICECONCitation:Stávková J., Stejskal L., Procházková Z. (2009): Application of behavioural economy principles in the grocery market. Agric. Econ. – Czech, 55: 314-320.
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The article presents the contribution to the research of questions concerning the price concepts from the point of view of the behavioural economy. According to this scientific discipline, contrary to the neo-classical economy, price is not always the most important factor determining the consumer’s purchase decision. The traditional spheres of behavioural approach to price perception have long been the analyses of the purchase processes of electronics and financial market products. Against this conception, the authors propose their own thesis on the possibilities of the behavioural approach utilization in the grocery market. Foodstuff is specific in many aspects, which is given by the fact that food products very often satisfy the very basic human needs. The thesis is backed up by the results of the primary inquiry of 3 520 respondents which has unveiled the fact that the consumer’s price perception of grocery products should be more likely examined by the means of behavioural economy than the classical theory of rational choice (homo oeconomicus). The conducted survey showed that the price is surprisingly the least important attribute of food products. Furthermore, after divisioning the addressed consumers into groups by their age or by the achieved education level, the percentage share of those who answered that price is very important when choosing grocery products was very fluctuating. The traditional neo-classical approach assumes a consistent or eventually increasing importance (in the case we accept the presumption that the consumer’s ability to decide rationally increases with a higher education level achieved). All findings of the primary inquiry then showed to be inconsistent with the traditional theory and in the author’s opinion, the behavioural research in the field of food markets has proven to be highly relevant.
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