1 Department of Marketing and Statistics, Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University2 MAPP - Centre for Research on Customer Relations in the Food Sector, Aarhus School of Business, Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University3 unknown
Parallel to considerations about settings, selection of the appropriate level of time, effort and care to be put into meal preparation is an important determinant of food choice. Nevertheless, significant relations between the time/energy consumers are willing to devote to food preparation and the types of meals they eat are surprisingly hard to find. One explanation for this could be that perceived convenience finds little support on the technological attributes of products like ready meals. This study's aim was to uncover significant relations between perceived convenience, meal preparation activities and technological attributes of frozen pizzas. Ninety-eight Dutch meal preparers, 18-29 years old, were asked to rate expected convenience attributes of frozen pizzas; (2) prepare and consume these pizzas in a home-like setting; (3) rate experienced convenience after consumption. Pizzas were also evaluated on their technological degree of convenience. Two main factors of experienced convenience were uncovered - ease of preparation and speed of preparation. However, only ease of preparation was significantly correlated with technologically-defined and expected convenience. Actual speed of preparation was thus not significantly related to consumers' expectations or preparation times announced by products. This partly confirms the hypothesis motivating this study. Acknowledgements This study was carried out at the Department of Agrotechnology and Food Sciences of the Wageningen University in the Netherlands, with the financial support of the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology.