Academic journal article Journal of Marketing and Management

Consumer's Intention of Purchase Sustainable Products: The Moderating Role of Attitude and Trust

Academic journal article Journal of Marketing and Management

Consumer's Intention of Purchase Sustainable Products: The Moderating Role of Attitude and Trust

Article excerpt


During the past decades, consumers considered issues such as environment and social while purchasing products (Harrison, Newholm, & Shaw, 2005). Moreover, as product production and consumption has effects on the environment, in new product development, sustainability is a vital element which is a challenge for product developers (Rahimifard, Coates, Staikos, Edwards, & Abu-Bakar, 2009). Sustainable product production brings new opportunities for companies. Hence, many companies are shifting to production of sustainable products while struggling with consumers and acceptance of these products by market (Murto, Person, & Ahola, 2014).

In review of literature, there are available researches considering sustainable products mainly with the aim of targeting related customers (William, Kumju, Seonaidh, & Caroline J., 2010). However, consumers in practice, do not purchased these products a lot. The main reason is that consumers do not have the essential knowledge about the attributes of sustainable product. Besides, the underling factors which play role on intention of consumers to purchase these products are not clear. Therefore, this study, firstly aims to discover the segment of sustainable products. Secondly, by reviewing literature, the influential factors on consumer's intention will be clear. In the last stage, study will propose the conceptual framework of consumer's intention to purchase sustainable product.

Sustainability concept was introduced for the first time in the United Nations conference on the Human Environment held in Stockholm in 1972. This concept is defined as "Sustainability development is the one that can meet the demands of people at present time without affecting the future generation to meet their demands". Sustainability is concerned with three main elements of environment, economic, and social known as Triple Bottom Line (TBL) (Jackson, Boswell, & Davis, 2011). Considering the main focus of sustainability, related products should have these three attributes. This paper considers three products as sustainable products: green product, organic product, and fair trade product. Explaining the attributes of each product can clear reason behind categorising them as a sustainable product.

Green, environmentally friendly or environmentally conscious products are the ones which reduce natural resource usage in addition to reduce hazardous impact on environment in whole life cycle production. Besides, waste generation prevention and avoiding toxic materials are other attributes of these products (Tsai, 2010). Green marketing refers to activities mainly to lessen environmental and social effects of product. More importantly, this marketing concerns with promotion methods to target consumers (i.e. green consumers) in an efficient way. Wildly literature tried to define green product, yet there are some confusions. Albino et al. (2009) believes that changing from green or eco-friendly product to sustainable product is a broad concept while these terms are used interchangeably. Besides, ethical or sustainable consumption is increased remarkably among consumers (Berger & Health,2007).

Organic products such as organic foods are produced with no chemical material to maximise sustainability (Snyder & Spaner, 2010). Moreover, there are changes in consumer behaviours toward performing ethical or sustainable consumption such as organic food consumption as they believed by consuming these products, they can protect environment (Hughner, McDonagh, Prothero, Schultz, & Stanton, 2007), and consumers have more willingness to pay more for these products due to health issue and protecting environment (Jan, Nguib, & Anand, 2011)

The focus of fair trade practices is on sustainable development and people oriented business model. This concept potentially brings fair wage, working condition improvement, improve safety, decrease discrimination between men and women, protect children's right and ethnic environment (Littrell & Dickson, 1999). …

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