Consumer-Oriented Product Development: The Conceptualization of Novel Food Products Based on Spirulina ( Arthrospira platensis ) and Resulting Consumer Expectations
Citable Link (URL):http://resolver.sub.uni-goettingen.de/purl?gs-1/15348
The world population is steadily growing and the demand for protein increases along with it, yet our planetary resources are finite. Spirulina (Arthrospira platensis) is an underutilized protein source suitable for human nutrition, and little is known about the use of spirulina as a food and the associated consumer opinion. New product development (NPD) requires early and active participation of consumers for the success of new products; therefore, a mixed method approach was applied to conceptualize (sensory profiling of spirulina extrudates and expert interviews) and then evaluate consumer’s willingness to try (consumer survey) three innovative products: pasta filled with spirulina, maki-sushi filled with spirulina, and spirulina jerky. To evaluate the consumer orientation towards novel, spirulina-based products, 1035 consumers from three countries (GER, ; FR, ; NL, ) were surveyed regarding their hedonic opinion about these concepts. A photo of each product was systematically accompanied by a benefit description covering health, sustainability, or innovation. Each consumer sequentially evaluated three combinations thereof (Latin square design). A multilevel model was used to analyze consumers’ responses regarding novelty, interest, overall liking, and expected flavor liking. Overall, spirulina-filled pasta was identified as the most preferred product. Mediation analysis revealed that this could be partly explained by familiarity with products in that category (i.e., pasta more than sushi and jerky). In conclusion, all spirulina product concepts would work equally well, if pasta, sushi, and jerky were similarly familiar to the target consumer population. All tested benefits were equally accepted with each product, with the exception that spirulina jerky would have to be marketed as being innovative. Country differences can be neglected.