Title: Consumers' literacy and preferences for sustainability labels: an exploratory analysis on Italian young adults

Authors: Riccardo Vecchio; Azzurra Annunziata; Athanasios Krystallis; Eugenio Pomarici

Addresses: Department of Agricultural Sciences, University of Naples Federico II, 80055 Portici (Naples), Italy ' Department of Economic and Legal Studies, University of Naples 'Parthenope', 80133 Naples, Italy ' Department of Management, Aarhus University, 8000 Aarhus, Denmark ' Department of Land, Environment, Agriculture and Forestry, University of Padua, 35020 Legnaro (Padua), Italy

Abstract: Activists and policy makers strongly encourage consumers to act as responsible citizens when purchasing everyday products. Accordingly, retailers and brands are competing on the market introducing a plethora of sustainability labels that should address increasing customer demand. Nevertheless, the usefulness of these labelling schemes in aiding consumers to make informed purchase decisions is still heavily debated. Results of a survey on Italian young consumers (N = 500) reveal low levels of individuals' familiarity with sustainability labels and highlight that several socio-demographic characteristics and food habits have a significant impact on consumers' knowledge of these labels.

Keywords: sustainability labels; multivariate probit; Italy; consumer literacy; consumer preferences; young adults; consumer knowledge; socio-demographics; food habits.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGSB.2015.072692

International Journal of Globalisation and Small Business, 2015 Vol.7 No.3/4, pp.221 - 233

Received: 19 Mar 2015
Accepted: 13 Aug 2015

Published online: 24 Oct 2015 *

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