Date of Award

12-2005

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

Major

Human Ecology

Major Professor

Youn-Kyung Kim

Committee Members

Ann Fairhurst, Laura D. Jolly, William L. Seaver

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to add to the body of knowledge by determining Hispanic consumers’ food retailer store choice. This study tested: (1) how Hispanic consumers’ attitudes towards store environmental attributes of the primary food retail store type shopped will differ by variety of acculturation (as measured by the attributes’ importance and likelihood the preferred food retailer contains these attributes); (2) how Hispanic consumers’ primary food retail store type choice is dependent upon variety of acculturation; and (3) how Hispanic consumers’ attitudes towards store environmental attributes will differ by the type of primary food retail store shopped.

The survey data was collected during a festival event held in San Antonio, Texas, in April 2005. Of the surveys collected, 260 responses were used for the data analyses. Variety of acculturation was determined by using the Mendoze (1989) Cultural Life Style Inventory scale. Implementing a variety of multivariate methods including fuzzy cluster analysis, nearest neighbor discriminant analysis, MANOVA and Hotellings T2 randomization tests, the results of the study determined that Hispanic consumers’ attitudes toward store environmental attributes differed by the two types of stores studied (supermarkets and supercenters).

Food retailers who are interested in Hispanics as either a portion of, or their sole target market will unearth several interesting findings from this study. First, food retailers can learn which store attributes influence Hispanics’ attitudes and thus the type of primary food store shopped. Second, Hispanics’ different shopping habits and expenditures, as revealed in the study provide useful information for food retailers. Each of these conclusions contributes to understanding why food retailers should target Hispanics consumers. Therefore, this study included a number of managerial implications as well as ideas for future research.

Additional investigations of the data revealed a number of important findings that food retailers can readily use to gain ideas for their own markets. These findings included how Hispanics ranked store attributes overall as well as by individual variety of acculturation, and how expenditures differed between Hispanics overall and their individual varieties of acculturation.

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