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Health or Taste: Understanding Consumers' Preferences Towards Cooking Mediums in Pakistan

Health or Taste: Understanding Consumers' Preferences Towards Cooking Mediums in Pakistan

Sami Ullah1, Choudary Ihtasham Ali1, Umar Ijaz Ahmed1*, Shoaib Nasir1 and Amjad Masood2

1Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics, MNS University of Agriculture, Multan, Pakistan; 2Bahria Business School, Bahria University, Islamabad, Pakistan.

*Correspondence | Umar Ijaz Ahmed, Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics, MNS-University of Agriculture, Multan, Pakistan; Email: 


Consumption patterns are rapidly changing worldwide, subject to awareness, literacy, health concerns, taste, and many other socio-economic factors. In Pakistan, cooking oil is used in two forms; vegetable oil and hydrogenated oil which is commonly known as vanaspati ghee. Over time, due to changing eating preferences, health concerns, and quality issues, vegetable oil is rapidly replacing vanaspati ghee in the country. This study has investigated the impact of taste and health preferences and other factors on the choice of cooking medium. In this study, we have utilized a well-structured and pre-tested questionnaire for data collection from 250 respondents of District Multan. We have employed the logit model to examine the effect of various factors on choice variables. The results indicate that health concerns, urban locality, age, education, family size, and income significantly influence the preference for oil over vanaspati ghee. At the same time, the taste has a negative and significant influence on the choice of vegetable oil. The estimates indicate that the highest income group in the data prefers edible oil more than the lowest income group. As vegetable oil is costly as compared to ghee, consuming healthier food, price is an essential criterion for low-income consumers. Based on the findings, the availability of good quality vegetable oil to the masses requires time which can be ensured by enhancing local vegetable oil production and market competitive prices.

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Sarhad Journal of Agriculture


Vol.39, Sp. Iss. 1


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