Fair trade, marketing and consumer behaviour
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This paper examines different aspects of fair trade marketing. Firstly, secondary research examines the development, advantages and challenges of fair trade. Secondly, primary research explores consumer buying behaviour in Ireland and Austria in the fast moving consumer goods (FMCGs) market. Thirdly, the attitudes of consumers towards mainstreaming and clean-washing are explored. Phase one of the data collection involved one hundred and twenty consumer surveys. In phase two exploratory research using mixed modes collected data from nine suppliers of fair trade FMCGs. The findings suggest that the effects of mainstreaming are perceived to be predominantly positive. The research suggests that more needs to be done to manage consumer perceptions of fair trade. Specifically, consumers need to be convinced that their purchasing behaviour can actually make a difference. This paper will be of interest to marketing professionals and stakeholders in the fair trade and the FMCG sector in relation to: merchandising strategy for fair trade products; developing tailored brand communications for fair trade; and new fair trade product development.
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