Title page for ETD etd-07192012-132515

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Du Plessis, Henrietta Johanna
Email henrietta.duplessis@telkomsa.net
URN etd-07192012-132515
Document Title Food traceability in the context of Karoo lamb : supply chain and consumer perspectives
Degree MConsumer Science
Department Consumer Science
Advisor Name Title
Dr G E du Rand Supervisor
  • Suid Afrika
  • South Africa
  • Karoo lamb
  • Karoo lamvleis
  • handelaars
  • consumers
Date 2012-04-24
Availability unrestricted
‘Karoo lamb’ is a product with specific regional qualities that are based on, among other factors, the natural environment present in the region of origin. Together with the specific product qualities, regional image factors create a unique identity for a product, as is the case of ‘Karoo lamb’, in this way bringing about added value. Consumers will only consume food products that fulfil their specific requirements and have become more demanding about what they want. As food markets have become more globalised, consumers have become more concerned about the origin of the food they eat, with decreased confidence in the quality and safety of foods produced outside their local region or country. Traceability systems address these concerns, and the importance of establishing a link between a product, producer and place of production has therefore gained momentum as a trend.

The overall goal of the research was to explore the role and contribution of traceability as a system relating to a product of origin, specifically ‘Karoo lamb’, and the influence it has on consumers’ decision-making processes when selecting and purchasing ‘Karoo lamb’. Consumer decision making is a complex and dynamic process that can be explained according to a consumer decision model that specifies its various stages.

The research was conducted in three phases. During the first phase a quantitative research approach was followed to investigate and describe the audit processes that have been implemented by different retailers in South Africa regarding the traceability of lamb meat. In the second phase, focus group sessions, a recognised qualitative research technique, were conducted to identify the product attributes that were critical to consumers’ preferences and choices regarding the product, ‘Karoo lamb’. In the third phase the attributes, namely price, safety, quality, traceability and origin, were identified as significant factors influencing consumer choice and used in a conjoint questionnaire. A quantitative approach was followed in phase three and a questionnaire was used to measure the importance individual consumers attach to the different levels of the various product attributes. The utility values were based on the survey participants’ evaluation of the complete product.

Price is often known to be one of the most important and determining factors in the consumer’s decision-making process. A higher price can sometimes symbolise better quality or safety of the product for the consumers. The results from the conjoint questionnaire have shown that price, as an extrinsic attribute, was found to be the most important factor in a consumer’s decision-making process at 30.4% when purchasing lamb. Safety at 23.1% was the second most important attribute after price. This is not surprising given the legacy of BSE and e-coli outbreaks that were given much publicity in the press. The third attribute affecting the purchasing decision was quality at 17.0%. The fourth attribute of traceability affected the purchasing decision at 15.7% and the importance of the fifth attribute, region of origin, was 13.8%. According to the participants, the origin attribute had the lowest rating of importance of all five attributes selected for the conjoint questionnaire.

As the conjoint experiment was conducted electronically, the participants of the conjoint questionnaire were solicited with the assistance of a marketing research firm, Consulta Research (Pty) Ltd., based in Centurion in the Gauteng province of South Africa, and were part of the consumer panel of consenting survey participants for the company. In total 352 completed questionnaires were used in the data analysis. The buying and/or consuming of mutton or lamb were the only criteria that needed to be met for participation in the conjoint questionnaire.

In conclusion it can be said that there is a lack of certification and guarantee in South Africa that the product that is marketed as ‘Karoo lamb’ truly originates from the Karoo, and consumers can easily be misled as to the true origin of the lamb being sold. Traceability can be an important tool to help to establish the authenticity of food products and to check that claims made by producers are true.

AFRIKAANS : Karoo lamsvleis is ‘n streeksgebonde produk wat gebaseer is op die natuurlike omgewing in die gebied van oorsprong. Tesame met die spesifieke produk gebaseerde kwaliteite word ‘n unieke produk identiteit geskep deur die streeks faktore soos gesien met Karoo lam en hiermee bring dit toegevoegde waarde mee. Verbruikers sal slegs voedselprodukte aankoop en eet wat hul spesieke aanvraag benodigdhede vervul. Omdat voedselmarkte węreldwyd meer en meer impak maak op verbruikers begin hulle konsentreer op die herkoms van produkte. Verbruikers het verminderde vertroue in die kwaliteit en veiligheid van produkte wat geproduseer word buite streeks- en landsgrense. Naspoorbaarheid sisteme spreek hierdie probleme aan en die belangrikheid om ‘n skakel tussen produk, produsent en plek van produksie te vind het veld gewen as tendens.

Die primęre doel van hierdie navorsingsstudie was om die rol en bydrae van naspoorbaarheid as ‘n sisteem ten opsigte van produk oorsprong en spesifiek Karoo lamsvleis te ondersoek, asook die invloed daarvan op verbruiker besluitnemings tydens die keuse en aankoop van Karoo lamsvleis. Omrede die verbruikers besluitnemingsproses kompleks en dinamies is kan dit verduidelik word met ‘n verbruikers besluitnemings model wat die verskillende fases van die proses beskryf.

Die studieprojek is uitgevoer in drie fases. Met die eerste fase is ‘n kwantitatiewe benadering gevolg om ondersoek in te stel en te beskryf hoe en watter ouditprosesse geďmplimenteer is deur groothandelaars ten opsigte van die naspeurbaarheid van lamsvleis in Suid Afrika. Tydens fase twee is fokus groep besprekings, ‘n kwalitatiewe navorsings tegniek, geloods om die produk kenmerke wat verbruikers besluitneming ten opsigte van die produk lamsvleis beďnvloed te bepaal. Die kenmerke prys, veiligheid, kwaliteit, naspeurbaarheid en oorsprong is geďdentifiseer en gebruik in fase drie, die voorkeurkeuse ontleding. ‘n Kwantitatiewe benadering is gevolg in fase drie om die belangrikheid te bepaal wat verbruikers heg aan die verskillende kenmerke en die vlakke van die onderskeie produk kenmerke.

Prys is bekend as een van die mees belangrikste en invloedryke faktore in die verbruikers besluitnemings proses. ‘n Hoër prys simboliseer soms beter kwaliteit en veiligheid aan ‘n verbruiker. Die resultate van die voorkeurkeuse ontleding het getoon dat prys met 30.4% as ‘n uiterlike kenmerk, die belangrikste invloed het op verbruikers besluitneming. Veiligheid met 23.1% was die tweede belangrikste kenmerk na prys. Bogenoemde was nie ‘n verrassing nie aangesien die pers węreldwyd al baie aandag gegee het aan die uitbreking van die e-coli epidemies. Kwaliteit was die derde belangrikste kenmerk wat verbruikers besluitneming bëinvloed het met 17.0%. Naspeurbaarheid as kenmerk het die besluitnemings proses bëinvloed met 15.7% en oorsprong in die vyfde plek met 13.8%. Daar is gevind dat oorsprong as kenmerk verbruikers se besluitneming die minste beďnvloed het.

Die deelnemers aan die elektroniese voorkeurkeuse ontledingsopname is verkry vanaf die databasis van die bemarking navorsings maatskappy Consulta Research (Pty) Ltd, wat geleë is in Centurion, in die Gauteng provinsie van Suid Afrika. ‘n Totaal van 352 voltooide vraelyste is gebruik vir die data analise. Die aankoop en verbruik van lam en skaap vleis was die enigste kriterium wat gebruik is in die werwingsproses van die deelnemers.

Samevattend kan genoem word dat daar ‘n gebrek bestaan in Suid Afrika in die sertifisering en waarborg van die produk Karoo lamsvleis wat bemark word as afkomstig van die Karoo. Sodoende kan verbruikers maklik mislei word oor die ware oorsprong van die produk. Naspeurbaarheid kan ‘n baie belangrike instrument wees om die geloofwaardigheid van voedsel te bepaal en te verseker dat die aannames ten opsigte van oorsprong wat produsente maak die waarheid weerspieël.

Copyright © 2011, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria.

Please cite as follows:

Du Plessis, HJ 2011, Food traceability in the context of Karoo lamb : supply chain and consumer perspectives, MConsumer Science dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-07192012-132515/ >


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