A consumer-validated CATA list for whole grain breads
Check-all-that-apply (CATA) questions are increasing being used to investigate consumers’ product perceptions. We sought to evaluate a new process for validating CATA terms for consumer relevance prior to testing. The proposed method allows an opportunity for consumer feedback on a proposed CATA list without a more expensive pre-trial questionnaire involving real products.
164 verified whole grain bread consumers were scheduled for a central location test. Prior to the test, consumers answered an at-home web-based questionnaire. They were instructed to recall previous whole grain bread eating experiences. Consumers entered open-ended comments related to experiences before eating (sight, smell, texture), during eating (taste, flavour, mouthfeel), and emotions. Next, 35 design-balanced CATA terms (including most unlikely terms such as “Polka Dots” and “Gangnam Style”) were presented in 4 columns, along with “Other”. Consumer indicated applicable terms. Next their selections were cleared and they indicated non-applicable terms. Minimum interaction times were enforced on each screen.
Internally consistent applicable and non-applicable CATA results were analysed together using the Sign test. Statistically significant consistent responses of non-applicability resulted in 14 CATA terms being dropped; others were retained. As expected, consumers checked a CATA term more often than propose that same term independently, but variability was high for the terms investigated. An adjustment factor of 3.3 was applied to frequencies of consumer-proposed terms. Using thresholds by which CATA terms were retained, 9 new terms were added (and 1 existing term split into 2 terms). The final CATA question contained 31 terms plus an “Other” option.
The 161 consumers who attended the 6-product central location test discriminated products using CATA. Of 4991 consumer*terms, 4.5% were selected for all products, most commonly for “Brown” (selected for all samples by 29.8% of consumers). Results suggest the proposed approach may be useful, especially for verifying assumptions and identifying missing terms.
Castura, J. C., Fortune, S., Phipps, K., & Findlay, C. J. (2013). A consumer-validated CATA list for whole grain breads. In: 10th Pangborn Sensory Science Symposium. 11-15 August. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Poster).