Take Action

Home | Faculty & Research Overview | Research

Research Details

If Its Useful and You Know it, Do You Eat? Preschoolers Refrain From Instrumental Food, Journal of Consumer Research

Abstract

Marketers, educators, and caregivers often refer to instrumental benefits to convince preschoolers to eat (e.g., this food will make you strong). We propose that preschoolers infer that if food is instrumental to achieve a goal, it is less tasty, and therefore they consume less of it. Accordingly, we find that preschoolers (3-5.5 years old) rated crackers as less tasty and consumed fewer of them when the crackers were presented as instrumental to achieve a health goal (studies 1-2). In addition, preschoolers consumed fewer carrots and crackers when these were presented as instrumental to knowing how to read (study 3) and count (studies 4-5). This research supports an inference account for the negative impact of certain persuasive messages on consumption: preschoolers who are exposed to one association (e.g., between eating carrots and intellectual performance) infer another association (e.g., between carrots and taste) must be weaker.

Type

Article

Author(s)

Michal Maimaran, Ayelet Fishbach

Date Published

2014

Citations

Maimaran, Michal, and Ayelet Fishbach. 2014. If Its Useful and You Know it, Do You Eat? Preschoolers Refrain From Instrumental Food. Journal of Consumer Research. 41(3): 642-655.

KELLOGG INSIGHT

Explore leading research and ideas

Find articles, podcast episodes, and videos that spark ideas in lifelong learners, and inspire those looking to advance in their careers.
learn more

COURSE CATALOG

Review Courses & Schedules

Access information about specific courses and their schedules by viewing the interactive course scheduler tool.
LEARN MORE

DEGREE PROGRAMS

Discover the path to your goals

Whether you choose our Full-Time, Part-Time or Executive MBA program, you’ll enjoy the same unparalleled education, exceptional faculty and distinctive culture.
learn more

Take Action