Marketing strategies for functional food products
Functional foods are experiencing a growing demand worldwide as consumers seek ways to take control of their health. Despite this growing demand, the lack of a standard definition for functional food for formal categorization and regulation results in many functional food products run into hurdles for consumer acceptance, as many people are not familiar with the concept, and scientific evidence that could increase legitimacy of these products is not widely available. Of the 15 steps the Functional Food Center has outlined for development of functional food products, marketing a product to educate people is closely related to consumer acceptance and is therefore an important step to study to increase success of functional food products. This review article will focus on recent studies that examine carrier/ingredient combinations, information channels, credibility, and consumer targeting and how they can impact consumer intent to purchase or accept functional foods. These studies build off hypotheses tested in pre-existing studies or bring in novel determinants to consider. Finally, advice on marketing based on the results in the included papers and from an industry expert will be discussed.
Keywords: Functional Food Marketing, Carrier/Ingredient Combinations, Perceived Fit, Information Channels, Credibility, Consumer Targeting, Advertising, Consumer Acceptance, Purchase Intent
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