Consumer behaviour, perceptions, and preferences towards eggs: a review of the literature and discussion of industry implications

Published on Dec 1, 2020in Trends in Food Science and Technology11.077
· DOI :10.1016/J.TIFS.2020.10.038
Agnese Rondoni3
Estimated H-index: 3
(University of Reading),
Daniele Asioli14
Estimated H-index: 14
(University of Reading),
Elena Millan9
Estimated H-index: 9
(University of Reading)
Abstract Background During the last decades, several challenges have significantly affected the egg industry, such as the increasing consumer demand for animal welfare, the need for more sustainable food production, and the growing human health and food security issues related to egg consumption. The industry has responded by supplying a large variety of new eggs in the market. A better understanding of consumer behaviour, perceptions, and preferences for eggs is vital for industries to efficiently meet the expected, growing, and complex consumer demand. Scope and approach The focus of this review is threefold: (i) to identify the main factors that drive consumer behaviour perceptions, and preferences towards eggs; (ii) to discuss implications for industries and policy makers; and (iii) to identify research gaps to be addressed in future studies. A total of 34 consumer studies were identified, reviewed, and discussed. Key findings and conclusions Consumer preferences for eggs are mainly driven by intrinsic and extrinsic characteristics, as well as socio-cultural factors. While price is very important, especially in developing countries, production method in developed countries is a relevant sub-factor, from which consumers make inferences about the health, safety, and sensory properties of eggs. Sensory properties, like eggshell, yolk colours, and size, are also main determinants of egg purchases. Egg producers should better inform consumers about the differences between the various methods of production and the sensory properties of eggs. Finally, this review revealed the need to investigate more factors beyond intrinsic and extrinsic product characteristics as well as the lack of consumer studies in developing countries and on the growing plant-based egg trend.
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