Regular or low-fat? An investigation of the long-run impact of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchase volumes and calories

Kathleen Cleeren, Kelly Geyskens, Peter Verhoef, Joost Pennings

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
247 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Health organizations stimulate the development of low-fat variants to fight the obesity epidemic. We examine the effectiveness of this policy by studying the short- and long-term consequences of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchased volume and calories. Using a structural break analysis, we show that purchases increase in the short run after the first low-fat purchase, thereby confirming the single-occasion overconsumption effect of low-fat as shown in the experimental literature. Importantly, our results also show a significant positive long-term effect, which suggests that overpurchasing persists in the long run. In addition, our findings show that the long-term overpurchasing after the first low-fat purchase is solely due to the overpurchasing of low-fat items and not of regular items. These results provide support for the overgeneralization of claim effects and habit formation resulting in the enduring effect of healthier variants of unhealthy food.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)896-906
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Research in Marketing
Volume33
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2016

Keywords

  • Low-fat
  • Overpurchasing
  • household panel data
  • long-run impact
  • structural break analysis
  • Long-run impact
  • SELF-CONTROL
  • Structural break analysis
  • FOOD-INTAKE
  • BEHAVIOR
  • STATE DEPENDENCE
  • CHOICE
  • Household panel data
  • CONSUMER
  • CONSUMPTION

Cite this

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title = "Regular or low-fat? An investigation of the long-run impact of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchase volumes and calories",
abstract = "Health organizations stimulate the development of low-fat variants to fight the obesity epidemic. We examine the effectiveness of this policy by studying the short- and long-term consequences of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchased volume and calories. Using a structural break analysis, we show that purchases increase in the short run after the first low-fat purchase, thereby confirming the single-occasion overconsumption effect of low-fat as shown in the experimental literature. Importantly, our results also show a significant positive long-term effect, which suggests that overpurchasing persists in the long run. In addition, our findings show that the long-term overpurchasing after the first low-fat purchase is solely due to the overpurchasing of low-fat items and not of regular items. These results provide support for the overgeneralization of claim effects and habit formation resulting in the enduring effect of healthier variants of unhealthy food.",
keywords = "Low-fat, Overpurchasing, household panel data, long-run impact, structural break analysis, Long-run impact, SELF-CONTROL, Structural break analysis, FOOD-INTAKE, BEHAVIOR, STATE DEPENDENCE, CHOICE, Household panel data, CONSUMER, CONSUMPTION",
author = "Kathleen Cleeren and Kelly Geyskens and Peter Verhoef and Joost Pennings",
note = "Data source: We use data from the Dutch GfK household scanner panel. Apart from the purchase behavior of the household panel, the dataset also contains information on the product-specific health claim and calorie content. Moreover, we have information on the price and advertising spending as delivered by GfK and ACNielsen, respectively.",
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Regular or low-fat? An investigation of the long-run impact of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchase volumes and calories. / Cleeren, Kathleen; Geyskens, Kelly; Verhoef, Peter; Pennings, Joost.

In: International Journal of Research in Marketing, Vol. 33, No. 4, 12.2016, p. 896-906.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

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AU - Cleeren, Kathleen

AU - Geyskens, Kelly

AU - Verhoef, Peter

AU - Pennings, Joost

N1 - Data source: We use data from the Dutch GfK household scanner panel. Apart from the purchase behavior of the household panel, the dataset also contains information on the product-specific health claim and calorie content. Moreover, we have information on the price and advertising spending as delivered by GfK and ACNielsen, respectively.

PY - 2016/12

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N2 - Health organizations stimulate the development of low-fat variants to fight the obesity epidemic. We examine the effectiveness of this policy by studying the short- and long-term consequences of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchased volume and calories. Using a structural break analysis, we show that purchases increase in the short run after the first low-fat purchase, thereby confirming the single-occasion overconsumption effect of low-fat as shown in the experimental literature. Importantly, our results also show a significant positive long-term effect, which suggests that overpurchasing persists in the long run. In addition, our findings show that the long-term overpurchasing after the first low-fat purchase is solely due to the overpurchasing of low-fat items and not of regular items. These results provide support for the overgeneralization of claim effects and habit formation resulting in the enduring effect of healthier variants of unhealthy food.

AB - Health organizations stimulate the development of low-fat variants to fight the obesity epidemic. We examine the effectiveness of this policy by studying the short- and long-term consequences of the first low-fat purchase on subsequent purchased volume and calories. Using a structural break analysis, we show that purchases increase in the short run after the first low-fat purchase, thereby confirming the single-occasion overconsumption effect of low-fat as shown in the experimental literature. Importantly, our results also show a significant positive long-term effect, which suggests that overpurchasing persists in the long run. In addition, our findings show that the long-term overpurchasing after the first low-fat purchase is solely due to the overpurchasing of low-fat items and not of regular items. These results provide support for the overgeneralization of claim effects and habit formation resulting in the enduring effect of healthier variants of unhealthy food.

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