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Preventing food waste and profit loss

The ‘ugly’ label can help sell misshapen fruit and vegetables

Misshapen and mis-colored fruit and vegetables can sometimes turn many consumers off, leading to enormous food waste as well as lost profits for growers and retailers. But physically flawed produce isn't less tasty or nutritious. Now, new research shows that when retailers acknowledge its aesthetic shortcomings by labelling it ‘ugly’, consumers often overcome their first impressions. quoted Sid Mookerjee, co-author of the report "From Waste to Taste: How 'Ugly' Labels Can Increase Purchase of Unattractive Produce" as saying: "Using the word 'ugly' to describe unattractive apples or carrots increases the purchase of this kind of produce because it corrects for consumers' negative expectations of taste and quality." The report was recently published in the Journal of Marketing.


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