Muslim and non-Muslim consumer perceptions of halal at supermarkets in a non-Muslim country : a thesis submitted to Massey University in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters in Business Studies in Marketing

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Massey University
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The role of spiritual beliefs and religiosity on consumers’ buying decisions is increasingly gaining the attention of consumer researchers and practitioners (Maclaran et al. 2012). However, its role in consumer behaviour is not yet well established, particularly in the area of Muslim’s purchasing behaviour when shopping for produce/meat at local supermarkets in non-Muslim countries. This research explore the influence of whether religious beliefs on consumer’s shopping behaviour at New Zealand supermarkets. Specifically, this research is investigates whether, the religious beliefs around dietary restrictions for Muslims, in terms of halal consumption, influences their shopping behaviour at New Zealand supermarkets and whether there is scope for supermarkets to adopt Halal food practices. This research is also interested in determining New Zealand non-Muslim perceptions of Halal and whether New Zealanders of various religious beliefs and faiths are willing to accept the practice of segregation of halal produce in supermarket, as well as explore their knowledge and tolerance towards Halal produce. An online questionnaire was completed by 215 participants including 33 Muslim respondents and 182 non-Muslims of various religions. The results of this study confirm that religious and spiritual beliefs among consumers of certain faith (Islam, Christian and other religious groups) have an impact on their supermarket shopping behaviour, particularly Muslim consumers. Specifically the results shows that Muslim consumers would support the segregated display of halal and non-halal produce at local supermarkets in New Zealand. This research contributes to retail and consumer behaviour literature by exploring the influence of religious and spiritual beliefs on supermarket shopping behaviour, especially, in the area of Halal produce displayed and sold at supermarkets in non-Muslim countries. The managerial implications of this research may guide supermarkets in New Zealand in term of catering for consumers religious beliefs and consider adopting the suggested method of Halal display, which in return could enhance the Muslim consumers’ shopping experience. Future research could explore further on other variables, such as ‘self-identity’, halal logo and commitment could add to the body of knowledge.
Halal food, Marketing, Grocery shopping, Consumers, Attitudes, Consumer behavior, New Zealand, Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES::Business and economics::Business studies