What drives consumers to choose bottled water instead of tap water where the latter is safe, accessible, costs far less, and in spite of its environmental impacts? This research investigates the influence of hitherto unexplored psychological drivers in an attempt to generate a more holistic understanding of the phenomenon, and strategies for designing more effective consumption reduction campaigns. Using data from an internet survey of Swiss and German respondents (N = 849) we investigated the role of, social norms, affect and image on water consumption. Results suggest that these psychological factors play a role in water consumption choice. Convenience was the only contextual predictor - the inconvenience of transporting bottled water has a negative effect on its consumption, and a positive effect on tap water consumption. Although concern about the effect of bottled water on the environment was not a significant predictor of tap water consumption, we found that for some people, a link exists between environmental concern and consumption choice. Ways through which consumers may be more effectively influenced towards environmentally-friendly consumption are discussed.
Appetite – Elsevier
Published: Feb 1, 2018
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