Influencing factors of consumer willingness to buy cattle meat: An analysis of survey data from three Brazilian cities

Camila Mottin Carlos Emanuel Eiras Daniele Maggioni Chefer Vinicius da Cunha Barcelos Tatiane Rogelio Ramos Ivanor Nunes do Prado About the authors

ABSTRACT.

Brazil is currently undergoing a process to establish new patterns of consumption habits and the implementation of a new concepts of meat quality. The process emphasizes the quality of information delivered to consumers, which is part of the new approach to meat quality and food safety. The objective of this article is to investigate the attributes considered important when buying beef, knowledge about the production process, labelling, cuts and characteristics of the animals. The study included 276 consumers in three Brazilian cities and their responses were examined in relation to the semi-structured form with fifteen spontaneous and stimulated questions. It was verified that the presentation of the product is regarded as the most important attribute at the time of purchase, they prefer to purchase meat in the butchers, and do not value the labelling of the product, which makes it difficult to identify and offer differentiated products or certificates. The frequency of consumption of beef increases with family income and the vast majority of consumers prefer low marbling meat regardless of the type of preparation. The consumer has little knowledge of more specialized cuts, since the product sold in the butchers has different cuts terminology.

Keywords:
beef consumption; buyer preferences; form; meat attributes

Introduction

A number of food safety issues such as for the sale of overdue products and the addition of prohibited substances, have arisen frequently in Brazilian meat markets. Although the level of quality and safety of Brazilian food is gradually improving, a number of irregularities continue to occur. Recently, a meat scandal in large industries raised doubts about the suitability of Brazilian meat, even though Brazil it is one of the largest meat producers in the world, resulting in significant social repercussions and an extensive confidence crisis on the Brazilian meat regulatory and production systems (Risius & Hamm, 2017Risius, A., & Hamm, U. (2017). The effect of information on beef husbandry systems on consumers’ preferences and willingness to pay. Meat Science, 124, 9-14. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.10.008.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.1...
). Brazil has the largest commercial herd of cattle in the world with more than 220 million animals and produces approximately 9.71 million tons of carcass weight equivalent per year (Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira [ANUALPEC], 2018Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira [ANUALPEC]. (2018). Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira (20th ed., Vol. 1). São Paulo, SP: Instituto FNP.). As consequence of the large beef production (despite the higher price of meat compared to chicken and pork), beef consumption increased in recent years, from 30 kg at the end of the last millennium to the current 43.5 kg per capita per year (ANUALPEC, 2018Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira [ANUALPEC]. (2018). Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira (20th ed., Vol. 1). São Paulo, SP: Instituto FNP.).

Consumers are affected by many external and internal impulses that can modulate their cognitive, emotional and automatic actions (Eiras et al., 2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
; Guerrero et al., 2018Guerrero, A., Rivaroli, D. C., Sañudo, C., Campo, M. M., Valero, M. V., Jorge, A. M., & Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer acceptability of beef from two sexes supplemented with essential oil mix. Animal Production Science, 58(9), 1700-1707. doi: 10.1071/AN15306.
https://doi.org/10.1071/AN15306...
; Vital et al., 2018Vital, A. C. P., Guerrero, A., Kempinski, E. M. B. C., Monteschio, J. O., Sary, C., Ramos, T. R., ... Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer profile and acceptability of cooked beef steks with edible and active coating containing oregano and rosemary essential oils. Meat Science, 143, 153-158. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2018.04.035.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2018.0...
). The role of psychological influences on people's behavior has been analyzed and described in the literature, especially in relation to the selection and purchase of different products and services (Font-i-Furnols & Guerrero, 2014Font-i-Furnols, M., & Guerrero, L. (2014). Consumer preference, behaviour and perception about meat and meat products: an overview. Meat Science, 98(3), 361-371. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.06.025.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.0...
). Factors such as psychological (risk, socio-cultural, lifestyle), sensory (visual appearance, in-mouth, texture, flavor and odor) and marketing (price, label, brand and availability) determine the meat purchase (Eiras et al., 2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
; Henchion, McCarthy, & Resconi, 2017Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., & Resconi, V. C. (2017). Beef quality attributes: A systematic review of consumer perspectives. Meat Science, 128, 1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.006.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.0...
; Vital et al., 2018Vital, A. C. P., Guerrero, A., Kempinski, E. M. B. C., Monteschio, J. O., Sary, C., Ramos, T. R., ... Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer profile and acceptability of cooked beef steks with edible and active coating containing oregano and rosemary essential oils. Meat Science, 143, 153-158. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2018.04.035.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2018.0...
). Thus, the meat consumption is determined by many factors, among them: age, personal income, educational level, mobility and consumer habit (Henchion et al., 2017Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., & Resconi, V. C. (2017). Beef quality attributes: A systematic review of consumer perspectives. Meat Science, 128, 1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.006.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.0...
; Hoeksma, Gerritzen, Lokhorst, & Poortvliet, 2017Hoeksma, D. L., Gerritzen, M. A., Lokhorst, A. M., & Poortvliet, P. M. (2017). An extended theory of planned behavior to predict consumers' willingness to buy mobile slaughter unit meat. Meat Science, 128, 15-23. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.011.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.0...
; Risius & Hamm, 2017Risius, A., & Hamm, U. (2017). The effect of information on beef husbandry systems on consumers’ preferences and willingness to pay. Meat Science, 124, 9-14. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.10.008.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.1...
). In this manner, identifying the factors that determine the decision at the time of purchase helps better understand the consumers, especially at this time of weakening of the sector (Henchion, McCarthy, Resconi, & Troy, 2014Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., Resconi, V. C., & Troy, D. (2014). Meat consumption: Trends and quality matters. Meat Science, 98, 561-568. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.06.007.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.0...
).

The role of meat supply chain is to seek consumer confidence and seek to satisfy the needs and desires of consumers, understanding how they perceive, learn and make their decisions. Therefore, understanding the desires of consumers should be the priorities of industry organizations (Risius & Hamm, 2017Risius, A., & Hamm, U. (2017). The effect of information on beef husbandry systems on consumers’ preferences and willingness to pay. Meat Science, 124, 9-14. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.10.008.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.1...
). Thus, companies should offer attractive products to consumers, both in terms of need and personal satisfaction in obtaining a good, as this improves their self-esteem (Troy, Ojha, Kerry, & Tiwari, 2016Troy, D. J., Ojha, K. S., Kerry, J. P., & Tiwari, B. K. (2016). Sustainable and consumer-friendly emerging technologies for application within the meat industry: An overview. Meat Science, 120, 2-9. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.04.002.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.0...
). To be able to stay in this highly competitive market, companies need to know the desire and satisfaction of consumers. Big companies should know where, how and when consumers express their will, needs and demands (Troy et al., 2016Troy, D. J., Ojha, K. S., Kerry, J. P., & Tiwari, B. K. (2016). Sustainable and consumer-friendly emerging technologies for application within the meat industry: An overview. Meat Science, 120, 2-9. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.04.002.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.0...
). In fact, a well-made and effective marketing is essential to know the needs of consumers, providing important subsidies for strategic marketing planning (Siró, Kápolna, Kápolna, & Lugasi, 2008Siró, I., Kápolna, E., Kápolna, B., & Lugasi, A. (2008). Functional food. Product development, marketing and consumer acceptance-A review. Appetite, 51(3), 456-467. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2008.05.060.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2008.05....
). The importance of knowing the consumer’s behavior is necessary to generate some advantages for the companies of the sector, as well as, knowledge of consumers or potential customers. Siró et al. (2008Siró, I., Kápolna, E., Kápolna, B., & Lugasi, A. (2008). Functional food. Product development, marketing and consumer acceptance-A review. Appetite, 51(3), 456-467. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2008.05.060.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2008.05....
) States that consumer behavior can be related to the individual's reaction to a particular situation or to several factors combined. Human behavior in relation to the acquisition of goods or services is determined by the motivation of the individual in relation to the products and services placed at his disposal (Henchion et al., 2017Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., & Resconi, V. C. (2017). Beef quality attributes: A systematic review of consumer perspectives. Meat Science, 128, 1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.006.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.0...
).

At the time of purchase, the consumer may be motivated by external or internal influences. External influences are determined by the family, by the social class in which the individual is inserted, by the groups that are references to him and by the culture. Internal influences are psychologically related, as they are related to the consumer's motivation for buying, learning, perception, attitudes and personality (Henchion et al., 2017Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., & Resconi, V. C. (2017). Beef quality attributes: A systematic review of consumer perspectives. Meat Science, 128, 1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.006.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.0...
).

This work was carried out to evaluate the beef consumption habits of the inhabitants in the northwest of Paraná and to identify the attributes valued at the time of purchase.

Material and methods

Ethic committee and local

This experiment was approved by Department of Animal Production and Research Ethic Committee at the State University of Maringá and it followed the guiding principles of biomedical research with animal CEP/SD: 732.961 and CAAE: 32433714.7.0000.0092 (Council for International Organizations of Medical Services [CIOMS], 1985 Council for International Organizations of Medical Services [CIOMS]. (1985). International Guiding Principles for Biomedical Research Involving Animals. Geneva, SW: WHO Distribution and sales service.), and was carried out in three Brazilian cities.

Consumer and form

The participants of this study were randomly recruited at the Northwest, Paraná State, Brazil South. The selected participants agreed to participate voluntarily only on the criteria of being a consumer of beef. The data used in this paper was obtained from a survey on consumer awareness and purchase behavior on meat quality. The survey was conducted face-to-face and each of the questionnaires took about two minutes to complete. Considering the differences in economic development level and density of population among the cities, we used stratified sampling and random sampling to draw our subjects. A semi-structured form research was used. Where the facts were approached quantitatively, quantifications by means of statistical techniques were performed.

A form was used for the data collection, which was applied at the time of purchase in eight commercial establishments, common places to buy meat such as butchers and supermarkets, seeking to understand the opinions and attributes that influence the purchase decision of the interviewee. The form number was divided equally between the morning and afternoon periods, weekday and weekend in establishments in the downtown and in neighborhoods. The specific sites for investigation were chosen based on the administrative function in Londrina (23°17'34''S51°10'24''W), Maringa (23°25′38″S51°56′15″W) and Campo Mourão (24°2′46″S52°23′2″W), and the number of questionnaires allocated was based on population density.

The first part was composed of stimulated and spontaneous questions about the attributes considered important when buying the meat. The second part was composed of spontaneous questions about buying habits and consumption of beef. The last part was composed of spontaneous questions about socio-economic conditions. The form was applied by a trained team. The questions were read in full and in the order they appeared on the form. There was no interference from the interviewer in the responses. The initial part of the form sought to identify consumption habits. Consumers initially answered spontaneously what attributes, whether visual or not, they consider when buying the meat, because in Brazil few kinds of meat have labelling. The second question was spontaneously punctuated in a structured hedonic scale with notes from zero (not important) to ten (extremely important) on the importance of attributes such as meat packaging, hygiene of the shop, meat brand, meat expiration date, meat price, sanitary inspection of the meat, meat tenderness, amount of fat and trimmings, presence of marbling in the meat and information of the label in the decision on the purchase of the product. The third question was about the most important factors should contain on meat labelling. The second part of the form consisted of spontaneous multiple-choice questions about the number of times they consumed beef in the week, place of purchase preference, type of storage (fresh meat on display at butchers’ shops, trays or vacuum-packed), sex and animal feed and knowledge and willingness to pay more for vacuum-processed and meat traceability.

They were also questioned about knowledge of specialized cuts, being: prime rib, tenderloin, chorizo steak, bottom sirloin, rib boneless, entrecote, T-bone steak, ancho steak, strip rib, cross-cut shank, rump steak and sirloin cap, nomenclature of cuts considered differentiated (gourmet meat) which was introduced recently by meat industries in Brazil. In addition, in this phase, the preference for marbling degree was also evaluated according to two types of preparation: barbecued or cooked using the American Meat Science Association scale (American Meat Science Association [AMSA], 2012American Meat Science Association [AMSA]. (2012). Meat color measurement guidelines. Savoy, IL: National Livestock and Meat Board.) from one to ten. Grade one is the lowest, grade ten the highest. The scale was printed and was shown to consumers at the time of the interview. Each consumer chose a scale grade for each type of meat preparation.

Final part of the form was about the socio-economic consumer’s aspects. The questions were related to individual information of each individual, such as sex, age, school education and family income.

Statistical analysis

The data were analyzed using SPSS software version 21.0. For the analysis of the spontaneous and stimulated responses, we used variance analysis (ANOVA) and the Tukey test for comparison between the means and also the interviewees were segmented through hierarchical cluster analysis (HCA) grouped by the Ward Method. Descriptive statistics procedures were done to elaborate the profile of the interviewees.

Results and discussion

Characterization of participants

According Hausman (2000Hausman, A. (2000). A multi-method investigation of consumer motivations in impulse buying behavior. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 17(5), 403-426. ) to study consumer buying behavior, it is important to develop a model, that is, a replica of the phenomenon that one wishes to represent, including the variables necessary to explain it and its interrelationships. Thus, for the analysis of the data of the present study, a theoretical model of the purchasing decision process of beef consumers was developed, based on the models proposed. The form distributed provided information about consumer characterization as sex, age, family income and educational level (Table 1).

Table 1
Characterization of beef buyers interviewed (n = 276).

In fact, the age of 64% of people ranged from 25 to 54 years. These percentages represent the characterization of the age of the Brazilians people. The studies carried out with meat consumers in Brazil, show age percentages very close of observed in this study, because it is the economically active population (Brandão, Ceolin, Canozzi, Revillion, & Barcellos, 2012Brandão, F. S., Ceolin, A. C., Canozzi, M. E. A., Revillion, J. P. P., & Barcellos, J. O. J. (2012). Confiança e agregação de valor em carnes com indicação geográfica. Arquivo Brasileiro de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia, 64(2), 458-467. ; Eiras et al., 2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
; Souki, Salazar, Antonialli, & Pereira, 2011Souki, G. Q., Salazar, G. T., Antonialli, L. M., & Pereira, C. A. (2011). Atributos que afetam a decisão de compra dos consumidores de carne bovina. Organizações Rurais & Agroindustriais, 5(2), 36-51. ).

Main family income of the interviewees ranged from 2 to 6 salaries (47%). According to data from the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) in relation to per capita household income, the average value of Brazil's income is USD 350. Pinheiro, Gomes, and Lopes (2010Pinheiro, M. C., Gomes, F. E., & Lopes, G. N. (2010). Perfil e preferência de consumo da carne bovina na cidade de Boa Vista-Roraima (RR). Revista Agro@Ambiente, 2(1), 28-36. ), Kirinus, Fruet, Klinger, Dörr, and Nörnberg (2013Kirinus, J. K., Fruet, A. P. B., Klinger, A. C. K., Dörr, A. C., & Nörnberg, J. L. (2013). Relação entre faixas de renda e o perfil dos consumidores de carne bovina da região sul do Brasil. Revista Monografias Ambientais, 12(12), 2776-2784. ) and Dias et al. (2015Dias, L. D. B., Isernhagen, L., Brumatti, R. C., Faria, F. J. C., Franco, G. L., Kiefer, C., & Ítavo, C. C. B. F. (2015). Estudo sobre o padrão de consumo da carne bovina na cidade de Campo Grande, MS, Brasil. Boletim de Indústria Animal, 72(2), 148-154. ) also observed that the family income from different regions of Brazil (South, Midwest and North) ranges from 1 to 3 salaries. However, in this study the family income was higher (between 2 and 6 salaries) than the average observed for the rest of Brazil. This may have occurred because the survey was conducted in some wealthier cities in the interior of the state of Paraná, characterized by higher income from agribusiness.

The educational level of the participant was mainly high school level, similar results have been compiled by (Dias et al. (2015Dias, L. D. B., Isernhagen, L., Brumatti, R. C., Faria, F. J. C., Franco, G. L., Kiefer, C., & Ítavo, C. C. B. F. (2015). Estudo sobre o padrão de consumo da carne bovina na cidade de Campo Grande, MS, Brasil. Boletim de Indústria Animal, 72(2), 148-154. ); Pinheiro et al. (2010Pinheiro, M. C., Gomes, F. E., & Lopes, G. N. (2010). Perfil e preferência de consumo da carne bovina na cidade de Boa Vista-Roraima (RR). Revista Agro@Ambiente, 2(1), 28-36. )) and Kirinus et al. (2013Kirinus, J. K., Fruet, A. P. B., Klinger, A. C. K., Dörr, A. C., & Nörnberg, J. L. (2013). Relação entre faixas de renda e o perfil dos consumidores de carne bovina da região sul do Brasil. Revista Monografias Ambientais, 12(12), 2776-2784. ) in other regions of Brazil.

Consumption habits

Beef is part of the regular feeding habit of Brazilian individuals (Table 2). The most frequent consumption of beef was > 4 times/week and the percentage obtained (62%) agreed with other Brazilian beef studies (Behrens et al., 2010Behrens, J. H., Barcellos, M. N., Frewer, L. J., Nunes, T. P., Franco, B. D. G. M., Destro, M. T., & Landgraf, M. (2010). Consumer purchase habits and views on food safety: A Brazilian study. Food Control, 21(7), 963-969. doi: 10.1016/j.foodcont.2009.07.018.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2009....
; Eiras et al., 2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
). Around 20% said that eat beef three times a week, 14% twice and 4% only once a week. Thus, the sum of individuals who consume beef 3 or 4 times a week is 82%. According to Brandão et al. (2012Brandão, F. S., Ceolin, A. C., Canozzi, M. E. A., Revillion, J. P. P., & Barcellos, J. O. J. (2012). Confiança e agregação de valor em carnes com indicação geográfica. Arquivo Brasileiro de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia, 64(2), 458-467. ) the meat consumption can be considered high when it is superior to 3 times a week, demonstrating that the interviewees in this study have high meat consumption. According to Kirinus et al. (2013Kirinus, J. K., Fruet, A. P. B., Klinger, A. C. K., Dörr, A. C., & Nörnberg, J. L. (2013). Relação entre faixas de renda e o perfil dos consumidores de carne bovina da região sul do Brasil. Revista Monografias Ambientais, 12(12), 2776-2784. ) current socio-economic changes and the increase on the salary of Brazilian population consequently is reflected as an increase on beef consumption decreasing other basic aliment as rice or bean.

The majority of consumers chose to buy their meat from a supermarket butcher (82%) followed by in trays (10%) and with a lower percentage of consumers purchasing the meat vacuum packed (8%). A similar tendency had been previously reported in Brazil by Mazzuchetti and Batalha (2004Mazzuchetti, R. N., & Batalha, M. O. (2004). O comportamento do consumidor em relação ao consumo e às estruturas de comercialização da carne bovina na região de Amerios/PR. Varia Scientia, 4(7), 9-23. ) and Kirinus et al. (2013Kirinus, J. K., Fruet, A. P. B., Klinger, A. C. K., Dörr, A. C., & Nörnberg, J. L. (2013). Relação entre faixas de renda e o perfil dos consumidores de carne bovina da região sul do Brasil. Revista Monografias Ambientais, 12(12), 2776-2784. ). As Behrens et al. (2010Behrens, J. H., Barcellos, M. N., Frewer, L. J., Nunes, T. P., Franco, B. D. G. M., Destro, M. T., & Landgraf, M. (2010). Consumer purchase habits and views on food safety: A Brazilian study. Food Control, 21(7), 963-969. doi: 10.1016/j.foodcont.2009.07.018.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2009....
) reported the increase of purchasing meat in supermarkets is consequence of the changes on food habits and modern life style, which demands time saving efforts and reduction of available time. Supermarket helped people in purchasing different kinds of products in the same establishment. Nevertheless, buying meat directly on trays is an increasing habit due to it being easier to freeze and store (Velho, Barcellos, Lengler, Elias, & Oliveira, 2009Velho, J. P., Barcellos, J. O. J., Lengler, L., Elias, S. A., & Oliveira, T. E. (2009). Willingness of consumers from Porto Alegre county, Rio Grande do Sul state, for purchasing beef meat with certification. Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia, 38(2), 399-404. ). Brisola and Castro (2005Brisola, M. V., & Castro, A. M. G. (2005). Preferências do consumidor de carne bovina do Distrito Federal pelo ponto de compra e pelo produto adquirido. Caderno de Pesquisas em Administração, 12(1), 81-99. ) evaluating the preferences of beef consumers from Brasilia regarding purchase and product purchased, noticed that the consumer decision-making process is determined from the level of information pertinent to the product.

Table 2
Habits and frequencies in the consumption of beef.

Regarding of beef cattle category preferred, meat from heifers (33%) followed by steers (20%) was preferred when compared with that from bulls (3%) and cows (2%) (Table 2), as observed by Eiras et al. (2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
) and Guerrero et al. (2018Guerrero, A., Rivaroli, D. C., Sañudo, C., Campo, M. M., Valero, M. V., Jorge, A. M., & Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer acceptability of beef from two sexes supplemented with essential oil mix. Animal Production Science, 58(9), 1700-1707. doi: 10.1071/AN15306.
https://doi.org/10.1071/AN15306...
). However, in the spontaneous survey for the majority of the interviewees (42%) the animal category has little importance at the time of buying the meat.

The traditional Brazilian beef production systems, due to agro-climatic conditions and pasture availability, are under broad conditions (Ferraz & Felício, 2010Ferraz, J. B. S., & Felício, P. E. (2010). Production systems - An example from Brazil. Meat Science, 84(2), 238-243. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2009.06.006.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2009.0...
). Thus, the meat from the animals finished in this production system was the best accepted by consumers (42%), followed by meat from animals finished in feedlot (24%); whereas 34% believe that the beef production system does not influence their preferences. The similar answers were obtained by Eiras et al. (2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
) in recent survey accomplished in Maringá - Paraná state, next to the city where this study was carried out. Thus, consumers have preferences for pasture feeding, but are not related to sensory attributes, but to habits (Simonne, Green, & Bransby, 1996Simonne, A. H., Green, N. R., & Bransby, D. I. (1996). Consumer Acceptability and p-Carotene Content of Beef as Related to Cattle Finishing Diets. Journal of Food Science, 61(6), 1254-1257. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2621.1996.tb10973.x.
https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2621.1996...
), where most Brazilian animals are finished in this system.

Hence, with spontaneous questions, when asked "What are the most important factors when you buy meat?” the majority of the consumers considered meat presentation to be one of the most important attributes to beef purchase intention (Table 3), which is in agreement with Ripoll, Albertí, Casasús, and Blanco (2013Ripoll, G., Albertí, P., Casasús, I., & Blanco, M. (2013). Instrumental meat quality of veal calves reared under three management systems and color evolution of meat stored in three packaging systems. Meat Science, 93, 336-343. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2012.09.012.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2012.0...
). This fact may be associated with the color and visual appearance of the meat. The meat color is the main attribute that influences the consumer at the time of purchase (Mancini & Hunt, 2005Mancini, R. A., & Hunt, M. C. (2005). Current research in meat color. Meat Science, 71(1), 100-121. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2005.03.003.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2005.0...
; Renerre, 2004Renerre, M. (2004). La couleur de la viande et sa mesure. INRA, 1, 63-68. ). Chambers and Bowers (1993Chambers, E., & Bowers, J. R. (1993). Consumer perception of sensory qualities in muscle foods. Food Technology, 47(11), 116-120. ) working with sensory perception of consumers, argue that before any other feature consumers are primarily concerned with the sensory properties of flesh presentation, such as color and odor.

Following presentation, the second most important factor for these consumers was the meat quality. However, a low proportion of Brazilian participants considered that price is the most important factor in beef purchasing decisions, as happened with European consumers, who considered other factors such as origin or animal feed to be more important than price when choosing meat (Realini et al., 2013Realini, C. E., Font i Furnols, M., Sañudo, C., Montossi, F., Oliver, M. A., & Guerrero, L. (2013). Spanish, French and British consumers' acceptability of Uruguayan beef, and consumers' beef choice associated with country of origin, finishing diet and meat price. Meat Science, 95(1), 14-21. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.04.004.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.0...
). Still, hygiene on the store, meat preparation method, expiration date and brand have little importance.

Table 3
Meat buying habits of interviewees (n= 276).

In the stimulated question the preference of the consumer is more ambiguous. Thus, the business hygiene was considered the most important attribute (P < 0.05), followed by amount of fat and trimmings, presentation, expiration date and sanitary inspection. It was considered intermediate tenderness, price, label and package. And finally, meat brand and marbling are attributes less relevant to consumers in both questions.

Brazilian consumers are not used to buying label packaged meat, so only expiration date (61%) is considered important (Table 3). The other attributes were low scored.

Consumer knowledge of meat cuts

Concerning the knowledge of meat cuts, 85% of the interviewees said they are familiar with three cuts (Table 4), being the best known, rump steak, tenderloin and bottom sirloin. It has been observed that more specialized cuts such as entrecote, T-bone, ancho steak are little known by consumers. Women know on average three to five cuts and men know three to six cuts.

Consumers marbling preference

In Brazil, the beef is consumed preferably cooked in saucepans, grilled or baked as barbecue. In this way, for a greater succulence it is necessary that the meat present certain amount of internal fat (marbling). The results obtained in relation to the marbling preference of preparation showed that the interviewees preferred the meat with a medium marbling degree for cooked meat (Figure 1). Grade 5 (29%) was the most preferred for braised meat, followed by grade 1 (21%) according American Meat Science Association (AMSA, 2012American Meat Science Association [AMSA]. (2012). Meat color measurement guidelines. Savoy, IL: National Livestock and Meat Board.) scale. Intermediate grades (2, 3, 4 and 6) also were preferred by low consumer percentage. For the consumer of grilled meat grade 1 was preferred, and most consumers scored on meats with a grade less than 5 (72%).

For meat consumed in the form of barbecue, grade 5 was also the most preferred; but in a smaller percentage (20%) when compared to the meat consumed cooked in the saucepan preparation, followed by grade 1 (13%). On the contrary, marbling grade of the meat preferred for cooking in the pan, for meat consumed as a barbecue marbling grade had low importance, since it ranged from 2 to 7. When analyzing these results, it can be observed that the marbling grade is a characteristic little known to most of the interviewees, they tend to associate this parameter with possible deleterious effects on the health.

Consumer knowledge about ageing and traceability of meat

The current changes and demands have encouraged the development of highly efficient production systems in order to maximize the potential growth of the animals, reduce the age at slaughter and increase the meat quality (Ito et al., 2010Ito, R. H., Prado, I. N., Visentainer, J. V., Prado, R. M., Fugita, C. A., & Pires, M. C. O. (2010). Carcass characteristics, chemical and fatty acid composition of Longissimus muscle of Purunã bulls slaughtered at 18 or 24 months of age. Acta Scientiarum. Animal Sciences, 32(3), 299-307. doi: 10.4025/actascianimsci.v32i3.7274.
https://doi.org/10.4025/actascianimsci.v...
; Prado et al., 2009Prado, J. M., Prado, I. N., Visentainer, J. V., Rotta, P. P., Perotto, D., Moletta, J. L., ... Ducatti, T. (2009). The effect of breed on the chemical composition and fatty acid profile of the Longissimus dorsi muscle of Brazilian beef cattle. Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences, 18(2), 231-240. ). Therefore, there is increasing interest in the “green image” of animal products. Traceability of animal production system (pasture vs. feedlot) is therefore a major challenge for scientists, commercial structures and farmers (Dian et al., 2007Dian, P. H. M., Andueza, D., Barbosa, C. M. P., Amoureux, S., Jestin, M., Carvalho, P. C. F., ... Prache, S. (2007). Methodological developments in the use of visible reflectance spectroscopy for discriminating pasture-fed from concentrate-fed lamb carcasses. Animal, 1(08), 1198-1208. doi: 10.1017/S175173110700047X.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173110700047...
; Dian, Andueza, Jestin, Prado, & Prache, 2008Dian, P. H. M., Andueza, D., Jestin, M., Prado, I. N., & Prache, S. (2008). Comparison of visible and near infrared reflectance spectroscopy to discriminate between pasture-fed and concentrate-fed lamb carcasses. Meat Science, 80(4), 1157-1164. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2008.05.009.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2008.0...
).

Table 4
Meat cuts knowledge

Figure 1
Preference of marbling in the meat among the consumers according to meat preparation.

On the other hand, in Brazil the aged meat consumption is still little used due to meats characteristics and consumption habits. The ageing is one of the most commonly used methods to improve the quality of beef (Obuz, Akkaya, Gök, & Dikeman, 2014Obuz, E., Akkaya, L., Gök, V., & Dikeman, M. E. (2014). Effects of blade tenderization, aging method and aging time on meat quality characteristics of Longissimus lumborum steaks from cull Holstein cows. Meat Science, 96, 1227-1232. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.11.015.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.1...
). During the ageing process, many biochemical processes occur, which are responsible for quality enhancement, mainly tenderness (Eiras et al., 2017Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173111600174...
) and flavor development (Guerrero et al., 2018Guerrero, A., Rivaroli, D. C., Sañudo, C., Campo, M. M., Valero, M. V., Jorge, A. M., & Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer acceptability of beef from two sexes supplemented with essential oil mix. Animal Production Science, 58(9), 1700-1707. doi: 10.1071/AN15306.
https://doi.org/10.1071/AN15306...
). Thus, the last part of the research would like to know about two important aspects in the production system and commercialization of the meat: traceability and ageing of the meat.

The results on the knowledge and willingness to pay for traceability obtained in this study show that a large proportion of consumers (42%) are aware of the concept of traced meat (Table 5). This result could be surprising since the knowledge about the traceability of the meat is a recent issue. In fact, tools used in traceability of meat are still scarce, expensive and difficult to apply (Prache, 2009Prache, S. (2009). Diet authentication in sheep from the composition of animal tissues and products. Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia, 38, 362-370. doi: 10.1590/S1516-35982009001300036.
https://doi.org/10.1590/S1516-3598200900...
; Prache et al., 2007Prache, S., Martin, B., Noziere, P., Engel, E., Besle, J. M., Ferlay, A., ... Andueza, D. (2007). Diet authentication in ruminants from the composition of their products and tissues. Productions Animales, 20(4), 295-307. ).

However, 40% of the interviewees considered that there is no benefit of the traced meat in relation to the untraced meat. This fact can also be related to the value of the meat traced, since in Brazil certified meat can present values up to 30% higher than the product that does not have certification of origin (Lazzarotto, 2003Lazzarotto, N. F. (2003). Estudos sobre o mercado de certificações em alimentos no Brasil. Recovered from: http://sistema.semead.com.br/5semead/PNEE/Estudo%20sobre%20o%20Mercado%20de%20certifica%E7ao.pdf.
http://sistema.semead.com.br/5semead/PNE...
). Angulo and Gil (2007Angulo, A. M., & Gil, J. M. (2007). Risk perception and consumer willingness to pay for certified beef in Spain. Food Quality and Preference, 18(8), 1106-1117. doi: 10.1016/j.foodqual.2007.05.008.
https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodqual.2007....
) reported that in order to determine the consumer’s perceptions of quality control systems, it should be better disseminated to the population.

In the same way we observed that the consumer is familiar with aged meat (47%) but does not have the habit of consuming this product, besides not liking its sensorial characteristics (Table 5). Besides that, the ageing process implies higher costs and the consumer is not willing to pay for it.

Table 5
Knowledge about meat production system

Conclusion

Research indicates that the consumer values the presentation of the product as the most important attribute. The consumer prefers the purchase of meat at the butchers and does not value the labeling of the product which makes it difficult to identify and offer differentiated or certified products. The frequency of beef consumption increases with family income, and although the vast majority of consumers prefer low marbling meat regardless of the type of preparation the meat will be subjected to, there appears to be a consumer group that prefers meat with this attribute developed when the goal is to prepare barbecue.

References

  • American Meat Science Association [AMSA]. (2012). Meat color measurement guidelines Savoy, IL: National Livestock and Meat Board.
  • Angulo, A. M., & Gil, J. M. (2007). Risk perception and consumer willingness to pay for certified beef in Spain. Food Quality and Preference, 18(8), 1106-1117. doi: 10.1016/j.foodqual.2007.05.008.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodqual.2007.05.008.
  • Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira [ANUALPEC]. (2018). Anuário da Pecuária Brasileira (20th ed., Vol. 1). São Paulo, SP: Instituto FNP.
  • Behrens, J. H., Barcellos, M. N., Frewer, L. J., Nunes, T. P., Franco, B. D. G. M., Destro, M. T., & Landgraf, M. (2010). Consumer purchase habits and views on food safety: A Brazilian study. Food Control, 21(7), 963-969. doi: 10.1016/j.foodcont.2009.07.018.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodcont.2009.07.018
  • Brandão, F. S., Ceolin, A. C., Canozzi, M. E. A., Revillion, J. P. P., & Barcellos, J. O. J. (2012). Confiança e agregação de valor em carnes com indicação geográfica. Arquivo Brasileiro de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia, 64(2), 458-467.
  • Brisola, M. V., & Castro, A. M. G. (2005). Preferências do consumidor de carne bovina do Distrito Federal pelo ponto de compra e pelo produto adquirido. Caderno de Pesquisas em Administração, 12(1), 81-99.
  • Chambers, E., & Bowers, J. R. (1993). Consumer perception of sensory qualities in muscle foods. Food Technology, 47(11), 116-120.
  • Council for International Organizations of Medical Services [CIOMS]. (1985). International Guiding Principles for Biomedical Research Involving Animals Geneva, SW: WHO Distribution and sales service.
  • Dian, P. H. M., Andueza, D., Barbosa, C. M. P., Amoureux, S., Jestin, M., Carvalho, P. C. F., ... Prache, S. (2007). Methodological developments in the use of visible reflectance spectroscopy for discriminating pasture-fed from concentrate-fed lamb carcasses. Animal, 1(08), 1198-1208. doi: 10.1017/S175173110700047X.
    » https://doi.org/10.1017/S175173110700047X.
  • Dian, P. H. M., Andueza, D., Jestin, M., Prado, I. N., & Prache, S. (2008). Comparison of visible and near infrared reflectance spectroscopy to discriminate between pasture-fed and concentrate-fed lamb carcasses. Meat Science, 80(4), 1157-1164. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2008.05.009.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2008.05.009.
  • Dias, L. D. B., Isernhagen, L., Brumatti, R. C., Faria, F. J. C., Franco, G. L., Kiefer, C., & Ítavo, C. C. B. F. (2015). Estudo sobre o padrão de consumo da carne bovina na cidade de Campo Grande, MS, Brasil. Boletim de Indústria Animal, 72(2), 148-154.
  • Eiras, C. E., Guerrero, A., Valero, M. V., Pardo, J. A., Ornaghi, M. G., Rivaroli, D. C., ... Prado, I. N. (2017). Effects of cottonseed hulls levels in the diet and aging time on visual and sensory meat acceptability from young bulls finished in feedlot. Animal, 11(3), 529-537. doi: 10.1017/S1751731116001749.
    » https://doi.org/10.1017/S1751731116001749
  • Ferraz, J. B. S., & Felício, P. E. (2010). Production systems - An example from Brazil. Meat Science, 84(2), 238-243. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2009.06.006.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2009.06.006
  • Font-i-Furnols, M., & Guerrero, L. (2014). Consumer preference, behaviour and perception about meat and meat products: an overview. Meat Science, 98(3), 361-371. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.06.025.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.06.025
  • Guerrero, A., Rivaroli, D. C., Sañudo, C., Campo, M. M., Valero, M. V., Jorge, A. M., & Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer acceptability of beef from two sexes supplemented with essential oil mix. Animal Production Science, 58(9), 1700-1707. doi: 10.1071/AN15306.
    » https://doi.org/10.1071/AN15306
  • Hausman, A. (2000). A multi-method investigation of consumer motivations in impulse buying behavior. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 17(5), 403-426.
  • Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., & Resconi, V. C. (2017). Beef quality attributes: A systematic review of consumer perspectives. Meat Science, 128, 1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.006.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.006
  • Henchion, M. M., McCarthy, M., Resconi, V. C., & Troy, D. (2014). Meat consumption: Trends and quality matters. Meat Science, 98, 561-568. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.06.007.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2014.06.007
  • Hoeksma, D. L., Gerritzen, M. A., Lokhorst, A. M., & Poortvliet, P. M. (2017). An extended theory of planned behavior to predict consumers' willingness to buy mobile slaughter unit meat. Meat Science, 128, 15-23. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.011.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2017.01.011
  • Ito, R. H., Prado, I. N., Visentainer, J. V., Prado, R. M., Fugita, C. A., & Pires, M. C. O. (2010). Carcass characteristics, chemical and fatty acid composition of Longissimus muscle of Purunã bulls slaughtered at 18 or 24 months of age. Acta Scientiarum. Animal Sciences, 32(3), 299-307. doi: 10.4025/actascianimsci.v32i3.7274.
    » https://doi.org/10.4025/actascianimsci.v32i3.7274
  • Kirinus, J. K., Fruet, A. P. B., Klinger, A. C. K., Dörr, A. C., & Nörnberg, J. L. (2013). Relação entre faixas de renda e o perfil dos consumidores de carne bovina da região sul do Brasil. Revista Monografias Ambientais, 12(12), 2776-2784.
  • Lazzarotto, N. F. (2003). Estudos sobre o mercado de certificações em alimentos no Brasil Recovered from: http://sistema.semead.com.br/5semead/PNEE/Estudo%20sobre%20o%20Mercado%20de%20certifica%E7ao.pdf
    » http://sistema.semead.com.br/5semead/PNEE/Estudo%20sobre%20o%20Mercado%20de%20certifica%E7ao.pdf
  • Mancini, R. A., & Hunt, M. C. (2005). Current research in meat color. Meat Science, 71(1), 100-121. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2005.03.003.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2005.03.003
  • Mazzuchetti, R. N., & Batalha, M. O. (2004). O comportamento do consumidor em relação ao consumo e às estruturas de comercialização da carne bovina na região de Amerios/PR. Varia Scientia, 4(7), 9-23.
  • Obuz, E., Akkaya, L., Gök, V., & Dikeman, M. E. (2014). Effects of blade tenderization, aging method and aging time on meat quality characteristics of Longissimus lumborum steaks from cull Holstein cows. Meat Science, 96, 1227-1232. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.11.015.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.11.015
  • Pinheiro, M. C., Gomes, F. E., & Lopes, G. N. (2010). Perfil e preferência de consumo da carne bovina na cidade de Boa Vista-Roraima (RR). Revista Agro@Ambiente, 2(1), 28-36.
  • Prache, S. (2009). Diet authentication in sheep from the composition of animal tissues and products. Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia, 38, 362-370. doi: 10.1590/S1516-35982009001300036.
    » https://doi.org/10.1590/S1516-35982009001300036
  • Prache, S., Martin, B., Noziere, P., Engel, E., Besle, J. M., Ferlay, A., ... Andueza, D. (2007). Diet authentication in ruminants from the composition of their products and tissues. Productions Animales, 20(4), 295-307.
  • Prado, J. M., Prado, I. N., Visentainer, J. V., Rotta, P. P., Perotto, D., Moletta, J. L., ... Ducatti, T. (2009). The effect of breed on the chemical composition and fatty acid profile of the Longissimus dorsi muscle of Brazilian beef cattle. Journal of Animal and Feed Sciences, 18(2), 231-240.
  • Realini, C. E., Font i Furnols, M., Sañudo, C., Montossi, F., Oliver, M. A., & Guerrero, L. (2013). Spanish, French and British consumers' acceptability of Uruguayan beef, and consumers' beef choice associated with country of origin, finishing diet and meat price. Meat Science, 95(1), 14-21. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.04.004.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2013.04.004
  • Renerre, M. (2004). La couleur de la viande et sa mesure. INRA, 1, 63-68.
  • Ripoll, G., Albertí, P., Casasús, I., & Blanco, M. (2013). Instrumental meat quality of veal calves reared under three management systems and color evolution of meat stored in three packaging systems. Meat Science, 93, 336-343. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2012.09.012.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2012.09.012
  • Risius, A., & Hamm, U. (2017). The effect of information on beef husbandry systems on consumers’ preferences and willingness to pay. Meat Science, 124, 9-14. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.10.008.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.10.008
  • Simonne, A. H., Green, N. R., & Bransby, D. I. (1996). Consumer Acceptability and p-Carotene Content of Beef as Related to Cattle Finishing Diets. Journal of Food Science, 61(6), 1254-1257. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2621.1996.tb10973.x.
    » https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2621.1996.tb10973.x
  • Siró, I., Kápolna, E., Kápolna, B., & Lugasi, A. (2008). Functional food. Product development, marketing and consumer acceptance-A review. Appetite, 51(3), 456-467. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2008.05.060.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2008.05.060
  • Souki, G. Q., Salazar, G. T., Antonialli, L. M., & Pereira, C. A. (2011). Atributos que afetam a decisão de compra dos consumidores de carne bovina. Organizações Rurais & Agroindustriais, 5(2), 36-51.
  • Troy, D. J., Ojha, K. S., Kerry, J. P., & Tiwari, B. K. (2016). Sustainable and consumer-friendly emerging technologies for application within the meat industry: An overview. Meat Science, 120, 2-9. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.04.002.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2016.04.002
  • Velho, J. P., Barcellos, J. O. J., Lengler, L., Elias, S. A., & Oliveira, T. E. (2009). Willingness of consumers from Porto Alegre county, Rio Grande do Sul state, for purchasing beef meat with certification. Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia, 38(2), 399-404.
  • Vital, A. C. P., Guerrero, A., Kempinski, E. M. B. C., Monteschio, J. O., Sary, C., Ramos, T. R., ... Prado, I. N. (2018). Consumer profile and acceptability of cooked beef steks with edible and active coating containing oregano and rosemary essential oils. Meat Science, 143, 153-158. doi: 10.1016/j.meatsci.2018.04.035.
    » https://doi.org/10.1016/j.meatsci.2018.04.035

Publication Dates

  • Publication in this collection
    25 Feb 2019
  • Date of issue
    2019

History

  • Received
    26 July 2018
  • Accepted
    06 Sept 2018
Editora da Universidade Estadual de Maringá - EDUEM Av. Colombo, 5790, bloco 40, CEP 87020-900 , Tel. (55 44) 3011-4253, Fax (55 44) 3011-1392 - Maringá - PR - Brazil
E-mail: actaanim@uem.br