Preferences and attitudes towards açaí-based products among North American consumers

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Abstract

Euterpe oleracea, Mart. is a palm tree widely distributed in South America and the juice which is prepared from its eatable pulp is popularly called "açaí" in Brazil. It has a high nutritional value consisting mainly of fat, fiber and vitamin and minerals, but is also rich in anthocyanins, phenolic compounds and demonstrates high antioxidant capacity. The aim of this study was to evaluate North American consumers' acceptance, intention to purchase and attitudes towards different açaí-based products available in the US. Acceptance and purchase intention tests were carried out with 155 consumers for seven different açaí-based products. Demographics and attitudes were also measured in an exit survey. A sorbet, a juice and a smoothie were the most liked products but purchase intentions were relatively low. Overall liking was driven by liking for flavor and aftertaste of the products. Consumers' segmentation based on acceptance revealed three groups, with a segment of açaí likers and another of dislikers. Most consumers had heard of açaí (83.9%) and 55.5% had tasted it before. Consumers knew açaí was healthy, nutritive, and rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants; however they did not know that açaí was oily, rich in fiber and that it may prevent degenerative diseases. Most participants showed low food neophobia (67.7%) and 51% scored high in general health interest. A promising market for açaí-based products among American consumers maybe women and health conscious consumers. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.

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Menezes, E., Deliza, R., Chan, H. L., & Guinard, J. X. (2011). Preferences and attitudes towards açaí-based products among North American consumers. Food Research International, 44(7), 1997–2008. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2011.02.048

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