Eco-labels: A Tool to Enhance Sustainable Consumption - A quantitative study about how consumers knowledge and trust in eco-labels can affect purchase intention

University essay from Lunds universitet/Företagsekonomiska institutionen

Abstract: Thesis Purpose: The purpose of this study is to examine eco-label knowledge and eco-label trust, and their relationships to planned sustainable behaviour. This will be done by investigating the Swedish market and more specifically eco-labelled food within the FMCG sector. Methodology: This thesis adopted a deductive research approach which follows a quantitative research method. The data was collected through an online survey and used a non-probability sampling method. The data was later analysed with the means of Confirmatory Factor Analysis and Structural Equation Modelling. Theoretical Perspective: The main theoretical framework used for this thesis is the Theory of Planned Behaviour. We have expanded the framework with consumer knowledge as well as consumer trust and applied this in the context of eco-labels and its effect on purchase intention. Empirical Data: The empirical data was primary data retrieved from an online questionnaire which generated 232 valid responses. These responses were the basis of the analysis. Findings/Conclusions: Eco-label knowledge was found to have an impact on planned sustainable behaviour through the mediator perceived behavioural control. Whereas eco-label trust was found to influence planned sustainable behaviour through the mediators; attitude and subjective norms. Thus, all three dimensions of the TPB framework are of importance to increase purchase intention of eco-labelled food. Furthermore, education level was found to neither moderate the relationship between eco-label knowledge and purchase intention, nor eco-label trust and purchase intention. In other words, regardless of education level, knowledge and trust are of the same importance. Practical Implications: The main implication for practitioners is to communicate eco-labels to a greater extent. Mentioned communication efforts are of the same importance regardless of education level among consumers. More specifically, we advise managers and authorities to educate consumers regarding eco-labels and thereby increase knowledge as well as build trust; two important factors to enhance the purchase intention of FMCG as well as to reduce the environmental footprint.

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