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Abstract

The unique health benefits of blueberries have increased consumers’ demand for this fruit. Although the demand is still low compared to other fruits including apples and grapes, consumers’ growing interest in blueberries has led to a significant increase of blueberry acreage in the U.S., causing the supply to exceed demand. To increase blueberry consumption and sales for the benefits of both consumers’ health and the blueberry industry, this study selected 18 blueberry attributes and used an online survey to examine blueberry purchasers’ perceived importance and satisfaction of these attributes. An importance-performance analysis (IPA) of these attributes was conducted to provide recommendations for future blueberry marketing and research.

All examined attributes were at least slightly important to the blueberry purchasers. Among the 18 attributes, price, pesticide free, and all natural should be what producers and marketers concentrate on to create a more desirable blueberry profile. Recommendations include highlighting local blueberries when they are in season and lower priced, being transparent about pesticide use in blueberry production, and educating consumers about pesticide safety. Working with the regulatory agencies to determine if the all-natural definition used to label some meat products is appropriate for fruits and vegetables was also recommended.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.