Emotional reactions to the consumption of foods play an important role in the buying of products in the market. A team of researchers from the Netherlands, Austria and Finland, used four different techniques to measure people’s emotional responses, and to find out what emotional effects, if any, eating different yogurt had on people. Three groups of at least 24 participants were each given a pair of yogurts to taste, and the four tests were carried out around this activity. The pairs of yogurts were of the same brand and were marketed in the same way, but they had different flavors or fat content. The four methods used to measure emotional response were as follows:-
- Face reading during consumption
- A new emotive projection test (EPT)
- An autobiographical reaction time test based on mood congruency
- Eye tracking to measure the impact of the packaging
The team also looked at the sensory effect of the yogurts. There was no difference in the emotional responses to strawberry versus pineapple yogurts, but low fat yogurt led to more positive emotional responses. Most strikingly, vanilla yogurt elicited a strong positive emotional response.
- The team found that eating vanilla yogurts made people feel happy and that yogurts with lower fat content gave people a stronger positive emotional response.
- They also found that even if people reported differences in liking them, yogurts with different fruits did not show much difference in their emotional effect.