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The impact of sensory substantiation claims on consumers’ purchase decisions

Project team: Robyn Wilton
Member funded research project
Running: Jan 2019 – Dec 2020
Steering MIG: Sensory and consumer
Project Number: 147086
Proposal documentation


Sensory claims give companies an opportunity to positively characterise their products in sensory terms and position them accordingly on the market. However, all claims must be technically substantiated, demonstrable and verifiable in order not to mislead consumers. Despite this, there is minimal guidance available to industry practitioners. This study proposes to investigate: the perceived credibility and meaningfulness of different types of claims to consumers for food, beverage and non-food product categories; the perceived value and impact these claims have on consumers pre-purchase decision making; how to communicate claims to consumers to optimise product standout during pre-purchase selection; how to make a claim for a global product. The project will provide members with insights into if/why sensory substantiation claims are seen to be credible, meaningful and valuable and their impact on consumer behaviour.


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