Virtual Meet-Up to Examine Factors Influencing Food Purchases

Join the Northwest Tennessee Local Food Network as it explores understanding how social status influences food purchasing during their monthly virtual Meet-Up on Friday, November 4th at 12 noon (Central) via zoom.

Watch Recorded Video HERE

Guest speakers Dr. Ross Pruitt, Associate Professor of Agricultural Economics from the University of Tennessee at Martin, and Dr. Lindsay Anderson, Associate Professor of Sociology at Tennessee State University, shared their research findings geared towards Farmers, Farmers Market Vendors and consumers.

Consumers are known to signal social status through their purchasing behaviors. As the food industry continually expands its use of strategic marketing to reach customers, understanding food’s connection to this kind of status signaling may open the door to explore new markets for farmers. This study explored the influence of social status, physical activity, and socio-demographics on an individual’s willingness to pay for a basket of high-quality foods. 

How Farmers Markets Benefit from this Research: TIPS for Farmers (Watch Video)

  1. Promote culturally diverse foods related to specific cultures including Latino and Asian Populations
  2. Tap into “Conspicuous Consumption” : individuals receive satisfaction from visibly displaying social status through purchases
  3. Focus on women as purchasers.
  4. Offer samples of food products and recipes to accompany that specific food or set of foods
  5. Being aware of experiences with cuisines and the foods that are available locally – visit a grocery store (hispanic or asian) grocery stores; ask purchasers – what produce is difficult for you to find and could this be something I could grow for you?

Additional comments and TIPS for Farmers from Attendees:

  1. Offer an on-site farmers market at University Campuses

The Northwest Tennessee Local Food Network is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based out of Martin, TN serving as a catalyst for a thriving and equitable local food system that is accessible to ALL.