Tunisian Consumer Quality Perception and Preferences for Dairy Products: Do Health and Sustainability Matter?
Consumer awareness about dairy quality increased in the last years, specifically after recent food incidents worldwide (aflatoxin contamination in Europe, 2013, E. coli outbreak in the USA, 2015). In Tunisia, food security and sustainability are at the center of agricultural and food strategies. Therefore, data collected from a face-to-face survey of 214 participants in three cities of Tunisia were analyzed with the aim to identify the general trends of dairy consumption in Tunisia. A factor analysis was conducted to define the way consumers perceive the concept of dairy quality with regards to health and sustainability perceptions. Then, by means of cluster analysis we explore the existence of specific consumer types in relation to dairy quality perceptions, with clear-cut and statistically solid socio-demographic and behavioral profile. Three consumer types were highlighted to evaluate dairy quality, based on different quality dimensions, such as health and sustainability, experience, visible quality, brand name, price, and innovation. The results show the emergence of a specific segment of young and older consumers, more educated, and with health and sustainability concerns toward dairy quality.