According to a new research, while light-colored food packaging might just trick you into believing that a said item is healthy it can also make you think that it probably tastes bad. It is well-known that the design and color of food packaging has an influential effect on the purchases that consumers make. But the color of packaging can have both its positive and negative influence on buying decisions.
People who aren’t too conscious about their health can have negative associations triggered due to pale package coloring, especially when they aren’t able to taste a food product. The new research states that packaging with light coloring can make you think that the item is healthy. However, it can also make shoppers who are less conscious about their health think that the item tastes bad.
The researchers of the new study found that packaging with pale colors tends to appear healthier to individuals who are conscious about their health. This assumption was strongest when they weren’t allowed to taste the item. In the same vein it also appeared healthier to individuals less conscious about their health but due to the fact they couldn’t taste it, the food, due to its packaging, also made them assume that it won’t taste good.
The team of scientists, from Kiel University, that conducted the current study said that dark food packaging may play a role in appealing to consumers who aren’t health conscious. The current research was published in the Journal of Retailing. The results from the research show how the color of food packaging has a role in determining consumer buying decisions. The said decision is also influenced by customers having an option to taste food and their general consciousness about their own health.
A total of 179 participants were recruited. All of them were shown the same product, herbed cream cheese, in both darker green and light green packaging. During the first scenario the participants weren’t given the option to taste the product. The results showed that light green coloring made participants who weren’t health conscious think that the product tasted bad. However, for participants who were health conscious, the product looked appealing.
During the second scenario, the participants were allowed to taste the product. The results showed that participants who weren’t very concerned about their health thought that the light green packaging made the food look healthy but less tasty. The researchers explained that due to the fact that human beings are unable to determine whether or not a food product is healthy, they rely on taste. Their assumption of a product being healthy also had to do with the color of the packaging.
That is why the color of the packaging is considered as a double-edged sword by the researchers. A pale color packaged food may appear healthier to consumers but it can also prevent them from buying it if they aren’t too health conscious. But darker color of packaging can actually be appealing to people and make up for the assumption of it not being tasty.
The results from the current study might prove to be helpful for food manufacturers who want to expand their consumer reach.