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Buy Organic but Also Buy Junk

The Paradox of Reusable Bag Shoppers

Grocery shoppers who provide their own reusable bags when at the market buy more organic food items than non-providing customers, but they also buy more high-calorie, high-fat items such as chips, candy bars, cookies and ice cream. This pattern seems consistent both for shoppers who always bring their own bags and those who only do so now and then. The researchers, from Harvard and Duke business schools, speculate that shoppers are subconsciously "rewarding" themselves with treat foods for being environmentally responsible citizens. Among the findings: occasional bag providers only bought treat food on those occasions when they brought bags, and neither group bought treat food when told that they were required to provide bags, but only when they did so voluntarily.

More at Hbr.org | Posted 2 years ago by Robert S. Wieder

Previously: Organic Food Can Make You Act Like a Jerk

Tags: Reusable Shopping Bags, Grocery Buying Patterns, Consumer Psychology, Reward Foods

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