The motivation for this thesis is two different developments in the Danish society: the fact that Danish consumers show great interest in health and eating healthy products while unhealthy eating habits and an increase in the number of overweight Danes are also seen. Studies have shown that Danish consumers love sweets, such as wine gum and liquorice, and the consumption has increased the past years despite of dietary recommendations on limiting sugar intake and eating a varied diet. The media are seen as an influential source of the consumers’ knowledge about all aspects of health and therefore an important factor in consumers’ evaluation of food products. Through an online survey of 326 respondents, four depth interviews and a netnographic study of blogs, internet fora, Facebook and Instagram we found that almost all of the respondents eat sweets while also showing an interest for healthy food products. Despite of this most of the respondents in our study do not believe that sweets can be a part of a healthy diet. Through our research it became clear that many consumers overeat, when they eat sweets and often feel guilty afterwards. The chocolate and sugar confectionery company Toms International has developed Nellie Dellies - a wine gum and liquorice product with less calories and no added sugar. This product can possibly help consumers to healthier eating habits. Through health branding Toms communicates to the consumer that Nellie Dellies is different compared to traditional sweets and can be enjoyed without feeling guilty. But like all other foods Nellie Dellies should still be consumed in moderations. The thesis examines to what degree and how Nellie Dellies can have a health effect on consumers’ eating habits, and in particular the amount consumed. Our study shows that just under half of the respondents consider Nellie Dellies as healthier compared to traditional sweets. This health evaluation is based upon the low calorie content, no added sugar and the natural sweetener stevia, and these attributes are also seen as a focus in Toms’ health branding of Nellie Dellies. The findings of the study show no behavioral change when it comes to the quantity of consumed Nellie Dellies, which indicates that Nellie Dellies do not have a health effect on the consumers’ eating habits. This leads us to conclude that innovative and healthier products are a good idea in principle, but it takes other measures in order to understand consumers’ eating behavior when it comes to sweets and thereby to help Danish consumers to a healthier lifestyle.
|MA in International Business Communication (Intercultural Marketing), (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
|Number of pages