This research aims to investigate attitudes, motivations and purchasing behaviour and identify consumer segments among Earth Market`s shoppers. The Earth Markets® are a particular type of Farmers' Markets which are organized and promoted by Slow Food® association. Thus, in the Earth Markets® the criteria of the Slow Food philosophy may play an important role to define the profile of Earth Market’s® shoppers. We conducted a survey on a sample of 185 consumers who buy food products at the Earth Market of Bologna in Italy during fall 2011. Data were analyzed using descriptive, bivariate and multivariate statistics. Results show that consumers perceive food products of the Earth Market® as tasty, high quality, fresh, local, seasonal and safe. Social and environmental aspects are the main factors that drive consumers to buy at the Earth Market. Three consumer segments were identified, described and discussed. Suggestions and recommendations for farmers, Slow Food® association and policy makers are provided.
Keywords: Earth Market®; Slow Food association®; local food; Italy; consumers; attitudes; segmentation.
Jel Code: Q01, Q13, Q15