Author ORCID Identifier

http://orcid.org/0000-0001-8837-8144

Year of Publication

2016

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Document Type

Master's Thesis

College

Agriculture, Food and Environment

Department

Agricultural Economics

First Advisor

Dr. Timothy A. Woods

Abstract

This study explores measurable factors that influence consumer willingness to pay (WTP) for locally produced blueberry mixes: pancake mix, muffin mix and banana bread mix. The innovative aspect of this study is that the experiment took place at participants’ home. The post-preparation survey used a payment card approach to elicit WTP for each product tried as well as for the hypothetical third product not tried. A total of 101 out of 102 participants (99.01%) completed the process and returned the survey. Participants were instructed to prepare the products at home, sample the prepared product, and then evaluate the product and process. Sensory and preparation experience attributes for each recipe were considered as potential variables influencing overall WTP, including previous cooking experience for similar products, watching the Food Channel, and related shopping choices.

A survey, along with two of the three recipes – a dry mix to be combined with locally grown frozen fruit - was distributed to potential consumers at diverse locations of study. The average WTP for the blueberry pancake mix was $3.45, muffin mix was $3.25, and the banana bread was $3.39. The estimated regression of the Censored Tobit model of WTP suggests that the estimate Trial of banana bread mix is significant. Four other estimates of Place, Gender, Age and Income also are significant depending on the product. The positive sign of some estimates of Trial, Blueberry Baking Experience, Education, Income, Gender, and Watching the Food Network showed that these factors have positive effect on WTP for some products. The paper develops the WTP models and also examines the experience versus the hypothetical effects on stated WTP. The results provide some measure of market opportunity, suggest positioning strategies, and also suggest strong returns to home trial marketing incentives for these products.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://doi.org/10.13023/ETD.2016.486

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