Nepalese consumers are becoming the victims of food adulteration these days so we have made an attempt to study the buying behavior of general consumers related to rice grains adulteration by conducting a primary level survey through distributing structured questionnaire among 207 consumers in Kathmandu Valley. The study tested the effect of demographic variables and other input factors such as; price perceptions, knowledge, attitudes, beliefs, and experiences that influence on purchase decision for the rice grains. It has also considered that the buying behavior of socially conscious consumers depend on their knowledge, attitude, beliefs, awareness and consciousness of the consumers. From the analysis, we conclude that consumers prefer local brands over foreign and unbranded items. Quality is perceived on the basis of specific standards of cleanliness, soundness and purity. Consumers identify adulterants by looking at the attributes of the rice grains before and after cooking. The study also reveals that legal awareness among the general consumers is really low. Many of them only check price, manufacturing date, and expiry date and ignore other important information in the packages. Finally, the outcome of the study has a significant relationship of price perceptions with age and family modes, knowledge on adulteration issues with education and monthly family income, and buying practices with the awareness, attitudes, and beliefs. Furthermore, we believe that this study will help different stakeholders in identifying the awareness level, and understanding the buying practices of the consumers. It is even useful for the policy makers and micro-economists to measure the consumer’s welfare level. In order to increase the social welfare, consumer’s surplus needs to be increased and this can only happen if the benevolent regulator takes initiation in imposing the minimum quality standards of rice grains ,and other concerned authorities should adopt certain action in order to minimize adulteration level.
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