Why Do Consumers Buy Fair Trade Products? An Evolutionary Perspective Using the Theory of Consumption Values

  •  Claudio Pousa    
  •  Juan Nuñez    


Fair trade (FT) is a widely recognized and accepted model of exchange for goods and services, which has matured over several decades of evolution. Although Fair Trade products are increasingly important in many markets, research has neither provided a comprehensive framework to analyze this evolution nor provided a rationale that explains why this evolution took place. The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, we aim at integrating the different eras in the evolution of FT into a comprehensive framework that can facilitate the comparison between studies. Second, we aim at explaining this evolution from the perspective of the individual consumer using the Theory of Consumption Values (TCV). We propose that, as the organizational and marketing strategies evolved for FT products, a corresponding evolution at the consumer level took place. This evolution refers to the individual beliefs of the customer who is seeking and perceiving a set of values on FT products. The paper presents an innovative perspective, as well as implications for theory and practice.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1925-4725
  • ISSN(Online): 1925-4733
  • Started: 2011
  • Frequency: semiannual

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