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Parents’ choice criteria for infant food brands: A scale development and validation

Román, Sergio, Sánchez-Siles, Luis Manuel
Food quality and preference 2018 v.64 pp. 1-10
children, correlation, focus groups, food choices, grains, infancy, infant foods, infants, interviews, milk, parents, prices, Spain
The study of the motives that parents take into account when making commercial infant food choices is important because these choices determine what infants eat. Food given to children during infancy has a major impact on their health, development and growth. This article describes the development and validation of an instrument for capturing parent’s choice criteria for infant food brands (PCCIFB). A structured empirical scale development procedure was followed to develop this new tool. Items were generated from 18 in-depth interviews and one focus group with parents of children under 18months in Spain. The psychometric properties of the scale were successfully assessed on two samples of parents (n=197 and n=649). The multidimensional 11-item scale offers insights into the most relevant attributes, grouped in three factors (reputation/liking, environmental/social and convenience/price), that determine parents’ brand choice of commercial infant foods (i.e., formula milk, infant cereals and jarred baby foods). The scale dimensions were significantly and positively correlated to key brand variables, namely, brand familiarity, brand satisfaction and brand loyalty. Implications and future research opportunities are discussed.