Describe the technical solution you wanted the target audience to adopt:
Ultimately, we are aiming for staff at food service outlets to use desirable language to describe the plant-based dishes on their menus. Through our online and field research we have identified the key principles underlying language that is successful in driving sales of plant-based foods. For example, food services providers should stop using language that highlights inferiority or exclusivity of these options (e.g. 'vegetarian', 'vegan' or 'meat-free') and instead employ language that simulates a positive eating experience (e.g. emphasizing flavor or romancing provenance). Our initial research has found that using the right principles for naming plant-based food can increase sales between 15-70 percent. To help companies apply these key principles we have developed a range of implementation solutions. These include training workshops, guidance documents and creative exercises.
Describe your behavioral intervention:
To first identify the key principles underlying language that is most successful at increasing sales of plant-based foods, we conducted a series of experiments. First, we ran consumer preference tests to rank alternative names for plant-based dishes, followed by a randomized controlled trial to determine the impact of the best performing of these names on dish selection in an online menu test. Second, we tested the most effective alternative language categories identified through this work on actual vegetarian dish sales at a chain of cafés in the UK. Next, taking key principles from our research, we partnered with a multinational organization to implement changes to language describing plant-based foods within staff cafeterias. This involved developing a creative workshop format, the aim of which was to enable local food service staff to generate their own dish names for plant-based items sold at their sites. Following feedback, we iterated training materials to improve acceptability and utility, and then disseminated them to sites around the world through a series of ‘train the trainer’ sessions. Trainers were instructed to lead their own language workshops and, subsequently, make changes to menus and signage. We are now working with a range of other businesses to scale these workshops across the industry. Additionally, we are also sharing our research findings with a broader audience through a series of open access publications.
As needed, please explain the type of intervention in more detail.:
See above for further details.