Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 20 credits / 30 HE credits
How often have you walked around in the supermarket trying to decide what product by
which brand to choose? The options are many. Some people look for the price tag while
others are more influenced by the esthetic appeals of the packaging design. Some
people might look for ethical or environmental aspects of the brand.
The area of corporate social responsibility (CSR) interests many people today and is a
growing concern. We found that consumers consider companies acting ethically while
also new jobs among the most important responsibilities by firms today. These factors
are making the purchase decision process even harder for consumers. Sweden is one of
the most socially responsible countries in the world, making it important for Swedish
companies to integrate CSR into the core of their businesses. One example of such
integration is Fairtrade, a concept that has grown tremendously during the last decade,
while the attention focused on socially responsible behavior by firms has increased.
The purpose of this research is to investigate the relationship between Fairtrade and the
purchase decision of consumers living in Sweden, to investigate the awareness and
perception of Fairtrade and how that ultimately translates into making a purchasing
decision. From this we developed the research question:
“What factors influences Swedish consumers purchase decision in buying products from Fairtrade Sweden?”
The target group of our research is young adults ages 18-30. The nature of our degree
project is quantitative with a deductive approach. The research philosophy is
objectivism since we do not intervene in any way as we observe the data collected from
our survey. Furthermore a positivistic approach is used since we rely heavy on numbers
and data rather than words. We received 158 participants in our survey.
The theoretical framework consists of theories within the areas of CSR, branding,
consumer attitudes-behavior and finally previous empirical studies about Fairtrade.
From the theories we have developed a series of hypotheses, which we test statistically
using independent-samples t-test and bivariate correlation tests. Statistical support for
gender differences between men and women were found and also positive correlations
between willingness to pay for Fairtrade products and how often participants purchase
Fairtrade products were found.
The findings from our research show that the 18-30 year old Swedish consumers find
Fairtrade important and the general attitude towards Fairtrade is positive. Most
consumers chose Fairtrade to help people and because it makes them feel good. The
most common reasons why not to choice Fairtrade is because of the price or that the
products simply cannot be found. Women are keener on purchasing and caring about
Fairtrade products compared to men.
2014. , 78 p.
Fairtrade, Branding, CSR, ethical products, Fairtrade products, consumer behavior, purchase decision