Erica van Herpen

Erica van Herpen
Wageningen University & Research | WUR · Marketing and Consumer Behaviour Group

PhD
Associate Professor

About

93
Publications
46,971
Reads
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2,966
Citations
Citations since 2016
38 Research Items
2469 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500

Publications

Publications (93)
Article
Full-text available
Household food waste is determined by a complex set of routinized behaviors, and disruption of these routines may allow for a decrease in this vast amount of food waste. The current study examines such a disruption of household routines: the meal box. The potential of meal boxes to diminish different types of household food waste is investigated fo...
Article
Obesity is increasing worldwide and in many countries, the problem is particularly serious among lower income groups. To fight obesity, front-of-pack nutritional warning labels are a prominent regulatory tool that have been implemented or are currently debated in many countries. Existing studies document that warning labels incentivize consumers to...
Article
Full-text available
p>Firms often emphasize “green” benefits for products that are only partially more sustainable than alternatives (e.g., a more sustainable packaging with similar product ingredients). The current article posits that such strategies can lead to a perceived claim–fact discrepancy and examines to what extent this makes consumers feel deceived and detr...
Article
Full-text available
Purpose Bread waste is one of the largest contributors to the environmental footprint of supermarkets, mostly because of the short shelf life of fresh bread. This study examined a possible solution: offering frozen bread with a considerably longer shelf life. Professional freezing of bread can preserve its quality better than freezing at home. In i...
Article
Full-text available
Findings from behavioural research are gaining increased interest in EU legislation, specifically in the area of unfair commercial practices. Prior research on the Mars case (Purnhagen and van Herpen 2017) has left open whether empirical evidence can provide an indication that this practice of using oversized indications of additional volume alters...
Article
Full-text available
Plate leftovers are an extensive source of food waste in restaurants. One solution to reduce this waste would be that consumers take plate leftovers home (i.e., use doggy bags). Yet, existing social norms in many countries and feelings of shame currently inhibit consumers from using doggy bags. The present research examines whether switching to an...
Article
Full-text available
Findings from behavioural research are gaining increased interest in EU legislation, specifically in the area of unfair commercial practices. Prior research on the Mars case (Purnhagen and van Herpen 2017) has left open whether empirical evidence can provide an indication that this practice of using oversized indications of additional volume alters...
Preprint
Retailer price promotions, and in particular multibuys such as the popular “buy-one-get-one-free,” are often criticized as a leading cause of household food waste, presumably because they lure shoppers into buying more than they can realistically consume. In this research, the authors combine household scanner panel data and survey data from a natu...
Chapter
Full-text available
Behavioural change interventions directed at consumers have a great potential to reduce overall food waste levels. Van Geffen, van Herpen and van Trijp provide an overview of the literature on drivers of in-home food waste and translate them into guidelines for effective intervention development. They make a clear distinction between interventions...
Article
Full-text available
This study explores the motivations, opportunities, and abilities that consumers have for reducing food waste in everyday contexts that involve competing (food-related) goals. The framework of motivations, opportunities, and abilities is used to disentangle the complex array of factors that contribute to food waste. Results from 24 focus groups con...
Article
Full-text available
To assess household food waste in large-scale studies with the aim to understand differences in food waste levels between households, surveys are often employed. Yet, survey measures rely on people's awareness of their own food waste levels, draw upon their memory of instances of food waste, and can be subject to social desirability. Therefore, exi...
Article
With the use of virtual reality, this study investigates the potential for popularity cues to stimulate consumers to choose healthier products (versus regular products) within product categories in a supermarket context. Popularity may increase perceived product quality and perceived certainty about that quality. Healthier alternatives (i.e., light...
Preprint
Abstract This paper investigates how ‘gendered’ packaging designs affect consumer decision-making with regard to sustainably packaged products where packaging functions as an overt signal for sustainability. The research builds on prior findings that sustainable packaged product offerings are favourably perceived for gentleness benefits, yet are d...
Preprint
Abstract Firms often emphasize ‘green’ benefits for products which are only partially made more sustainable (e.g., a more sustainable packaging without changing the product’s ingredients). The current paper posits that such strategies can lead to a claim-fact discrepancy (i.e., actual environmental performance does not fully match the claim) and i...
Article
Food waste has become a global concern in recent years, especially the household food waste that is generated in the developed world. Multiple methods to measure household food waste have been proposed, but little is known about their validity. Five methods are selected and investigated empirically: survey questions about general food waste over a...
Article
Full-text available
Valid measurements are essential in studies into levels of household food waste and differences therein over time, cultures, or consumer groups. They are also key to identifying factors that affect waste levels and to testing the effects of potential interventions. Yet, there is a lack of valid measurement methods for household food waste. The curr...
Article
Consumers regularly waste products with unused utility (e.g., edible food, functioning appliances), but also have an aversion to such wastefulness. The present paper demonstrates that this wasting conflict has relevant managerial implications. Drawing upon cognitive dissonance theory, the authors predict and reveal in three experiments that brand a...
Article
The environmental benefit from sustainable packaging is not only dependent on the characteristics of the packaging, but also on consumer willingness to purchase sustainably packaged products. Consumer response is likely influenced by the specific design strategies that are used to make packaging more sustainable. Based on the circular economy conce...
Chapter
Health claims can inform consumers about important nutritional qualities of food products that would otherwise go unnoticed, and influence consumer choice. This chapter reviews consumer behaviour literature related to health claims, and discusses this in the context of the EU legislation. It addresses the influence of textual as well as pictorial h...
Article
Food retailers can present specific products in a separate category (e.g., separate section for organic products) or integrated into the mainstream shelf. This study investigates how assortment organization influences consumers' variety perceptions and product choice. We argue and show that when an assortment is organized according to an individual...
Article
Full-text available
People's responses to products and/or choice environments are crucial to understanding in-store consumer behaviors. Currently, there are various approaches (e.g., surveys or laboratory settings) to study in-store behaviors, but the external validity of these is limited by their poor capability to resemble realistic choice environments. In addition,...
Article
Full-text available
The use of psychological findings in EU internal market regulation has gained interest, particularly in the area of unfair commercial practices. This study investigates consumer perceptions of bonus packs containing an oversized indication of the extra volume in the package, such as in the Mars case. The Mars case serves as a standard reference in...
Article
Building on theories of cue utilization, this paper investigates whether and how packaging sustainability influences consumer perceptions, inferences and attitudes towards packaged products. A framework is tested in an empirical study among 249 students using soup products varying in packaging material and graphics. The findings show that (packagin...
Article
Full-text available
Food losses and food waste (FLW) have become a global concern in recent years and emerge as a priority in the global and national political agenda (e.g., with Target 12.3 in the new United Nations Sustainable Development Goals). A good understanding of the availability and quality of global FLW data is a prerequisite for tracking progress on reduct...
Article
Social norms refer to what most people do or approve of. Perceived social norms can influence food choice and intake behaviour. However, whether social norms can increase liking and taste perception of food products has not been studied so far. Across two studies, we investigated the impact of on-pack social norm messages (no norm, descriptive or i...
Chapter
Social norms are an influential driver of consumers’ preferences in different domains of everyday life (Cialdini et al. 2006; Melnyk et al. 2009) and are extensively used in marketing campaigns, as well as in political and social campaigns. Consumers are exposed to social norm information when they are in a good and when they are in a bad mood. The...
Chapter
This article discusses the placement of food products in retail stores, in particular how the placement of food products can influence how consumers perceive the store in general and these products in particular. It reviews the overall layout of the store, assortment organization, and shelf arrangement. The overall layout of a store (or department...
Article
Full-text available
This research investigates the influence that social sources in the service environment exert on customer unfriendliness. Drawing on social norms theory, the authors demonstrate that descriptive norms (i.e., what most people are perceived to be doing in a certain situation), in the form of unfriendliness by service employees and fellow customers, p...
Article
Full-text available
Health-related claims and symbols are intended as aids to help consumers make informed and healthier food choices but they can also stimulate the food industry to develop food that goes hand in hand with a healthier lifestyle. In order to better understand the role that health claims and symbols currently have and in the future potentially can have...
Article
Immersive virtual reality techniques present new opportunities for research into consumer behavior. The current study examines whether the increased realism of a virtual store compared to pictorial (2D) stimuli elicits consumer behavior that is more in line with behavior in a physical store. We examine the number, variety, and type of products sele...
Chapter
Regulators legislate businesses’ use of claims on product packaging by mostly focusing on textual claims and the extent to which they could potentially mislead consumers. Interpreting textual claims generally requires consumers to engage in extensive and deliberate processing (so-called type 2 processing in dual processing models in social psycholo...
Article
In many supermarkets throughout Europe, it has become common practice in the fruit and vegetable department to offer options in plastic packaging. Recent trends, however, move towards the removal of packaging. The current study examines whether offering fruit and vegetables without primary packaging increases the likelihood that consumers choose th...
Chapter
Full-text available
Regulators legislate businesses’ use of claims on product packaging by mostly focusing on textual claims and the extent to which they could potentially mislead consumers. Interpreting textual claims generally requires consumers to engage in extensive and deliberate processing (so-called type 2 processing in dual processing models in social psycholo...
Article
To tempt consumers towards more sustainable food choices, 'intermediately' sustainable products (i.e., in between conventional and organic) have been introduced. This poses the managerial question how to best position this range of products. In an experiment with intermediately sustainable meat products, we show that the choice share of these inter...
Article
External cues regularly override physiological cues in food consumption resulting in mindless eating. In a series of experiments, this study shows that mindfulness, an enhanced attention state, improves consumers' reliance on physiological cues across consumption episodes. Consumers who are chronically high in mindfulness (study 1) or who receive a...
Technical Report
A methodology for assessing attention to and effect of nutrition information displayed front-of-pack is presented. The methodology is based on an integration of the visual search paradigm, the choice paradigm and eye-tracking measures, and moves beyond reliance on self-report measures for attention and choice. Rather the following measures are obta...
Article
The current study investigates the relationship between focusing on body appearance and the ability to adjust food consumption according to feelings of satiety. Based on a resource perspective, we propose that focusing on outward appearance negatively affects people's ability to respond to satiety signals. Specifically, we argue that focusing on ap...
Article
Retailers often organize at least part of their assortment by displaying complementary products from different product categories together (e.g., a pair of pants with a shirt) rather than grouping items by product type (e.g., a pair of pants with other pants). However, little is known about how retailers should choose between complement-based and s...
Article
Full-text available
Consumers face marketing messages using social norms in many situations where different goals are dominant. This research examines moderating effects of regulatory focus for descriptive and injunctive norms in the promotion of sustainable products. More specifically, it shows that descriptive norms have a better fit with a promotion than prevention...
Article
Full-text available
To stimulate sales of sustainable products, such as organic and fair trade products, retailers need to know whether their in-store instruments effectively enhance market shares. This study uses sales data and a multilevel modeling approach to explain the market shares of sustainable products according to shelf layout factors, price level, price pro...
Article
Consumers can process information containing social norms at different cognitive deliberation levels. This paper investigates the effect of cognitive deliberation for both descriptive and injunctive norms. The experimental study examines the consequences for attitudes and behavioral intentions of these two norm formulations under different levels o...
Article
Although front-of-pack nutrition labeling can help consumers make healthier food choices, lack of attention to these labels limits their effectiveness. This study examines consumer attention to and use of three different nutrition labeling schemes (logo, multiple traffic-light label, and nutrition table) when they face different goals and resource...
Article
Full-text available
Consumers face marketing messages using social norms in many situations where different goals are dominant. This research examines moderating effects of regulatory focus for descriptive and injunctive norms in the promotion of sustainable products. More specifically, it shows that descriptive norms have a better fit with a promotion than prevention...
Article
Full-text available
Paradoxically, western societies witness a simultaneous increase in the number of overweight individuals and in the emphasis on thinness and beauty ideals. We test the relationship between focusing on body appearance and compensation for food consumption and show that focusing on appearance hinders consumers in compensating for previous consumption...
Article
Food companies, governments, and societal organizations use an increasing number of food-choice motives to persuade consumers to buy food products, and the question which combinations of motives matter for which type of consumer has become of central relevance. In this study, we use a concomitant mixture-modeling approach to uncover consumer segmen...
Article
Paradoxically, western societies witness a simultaneous increase in the number of overweight individuals and in the emphasis on thinness and beauty ideals. We test the relationship between focusing on body appearance and compensation for food consumption and show that focusing on appearance hinders consumers in compensating for previous consumption...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines the effect of descriptive and injunctive norms under different levels of cognitive deliberation. Results show that whereas cognitive load limits the influence of both norms, cognitive deliberation increases the effect of descriptive and decreases the effect of injunctive norms due to the valence of activated thoughts.
Article
Full-text available
Although social norms can substantially impact consumer decision making, understanding of how the specification of the norm determines its impact is limited. This meta-analysis (200 independent studies, 659 effect sizes) examines how aspects of social norm specification determine the effect of norms on attitudes, behavioral intentions, and behavior...
Article
Consumers generally prefer scarce products, which has been related to their exclusiveness. Currently scarce products, however, are not necessarily exclusive, but could be scarce because many other consumers previously bought them. We propose that consumers also prefer scarce products in this situation, which an appeal to uniqueness cannot explain....
Article
Social norms are informal, socially shared, and relatively stable guides of attitudes, intentions and behavior. Despite a large body of research on social norms, their empirically discovered effect sizes vary drastically and it remains unclear when norms are more effective in changing attitudes, intentions and behavior. This meta-analysis (201 inde...
Article
Whereas product scarcity is generally thought to enhance product preference and choice, this research distinguishes two different routes of scarcity effects and reveals that scarcity can also decrease choice. Scarcity due to limited supply signals exclusivity, whereas scarcity due to excess demand signals popularity. This reveals the status and app...
Article
Beleidsmakers besteden jaarlijks miljoenen euro's aan campagnes om mensen over te halen zich volgens gewenste normen te gedragen. Bijvoorbeeld om hen aan te zetten om vooral gezonde voedselproducten te kopen, om te stoppen met roken of om milieuvriendelijke verpakkingen te kiezen. Maar of die boodschap ook aankomt, is afhankelijk van meerdere facto...
Article
Abstract Consumers often make quick assessments of product assortments, to determine if these are worthwhile for further investigation. They anticipate how difficult it will be to distinguish the various options in the assortment, which will influence their assortment evaluations. We reason that these anticipated identification costs are conceptual...
Article
Arranged to Distraction: How Categorizing Products with Complements versus Substitutes Alters the Experience of Product Choice Erica van Herpen (Wageningen University), Kristin Diehl (University of Southern California), Cait Poynor (University of Pittsburgh) Short abstract (98 words) Although much is known about how substitute products impact consu...
Article
Het ministerie van Landbouw, Natuur en Voedselkwaliteit (LNV) wil midden in de samenleving staan en over de uiteenlopende waarden rond voedsel met mensen in gesprek zijn. De mogelijkheid voor het voeren van een goed gesprek over voedselkwaliteit is mede afhankelijk van het antwoord op de vraag welke mensen in hun consumptiegedrag en hun politiek-ma...
Article
The present research extends commodity theory, by revealing the effects of product scarcity due to different causes on consumers’ inferences, preferences and choice. The attraction of scarce products comes from two markedly different mechanisms: popularity for demand-caused scarcity and exclusiveness for supply-caused scarcity. In addition, scarcit...
Article
Full-text available
The value of products is not only determined by the utility that consumersderive from the products¿ attributes and their functional consequences, but has animportant social component as well. Specifically, scarce products are generally deemedvaluable, independent of the utility that their intrinsic attributes deliver. This effecthas been found in s...
Article
Full-text available
We approach Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) as a process in which particular CSR activities impact on consumers' store evaluation and trust. We hypothesize that consumers classify CSR activities along two dimensions: (1) the beneficiary of the activity and (2) the intrinsic contribution of the retailer, implying that consumers are interested...
Article
In recent years, interest in category management has surged, and as a consequence, large retailers now systematically review their product assortments. Variety is a key property of assortments. Assortment variety can determine consumers' store choice and is only gaining in importance with today's increasing numbers of product offerings. To support...
Article
Full-text available
In recent years, interest in category management has surged, and as a consequence, large retailers now systematically review their product assortments. Variety is a key property of assortments. Assortment variety can determine consumers' store choice and is only gaining in importance with today's increasing numbers of product offerings. To support...
Article
Given the explosive growth in the number of products, managing their assortments is a challenging task for retailers. An understanding of consumer responses to changes in assortment size and composition is required. This dissertation examines consumers' perceptions and evaluations of product assortments, with a focus on assortment variety. It inves...
Article
Retailers need to decide on the content and structure of their product assortments, and thereby on the degree of variety that they offer to their customers. This paper compares measures of assortment variety and relates them to underlying variety components. We conceptualize assortment variety from a product and an attribute perspective, compare ex...
Article
Full-text available
This study examines differences in the information content of magazine advertisements across market and transition economies in Europe. Content analyses are performed on 396 advertisements that appeared in women's magazines in the Russian Federation, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom. Results of statistical analyses reveal...