BACKGROUND: Rice is the only food item which is not liberalized in Korea. To prepare for future liberalization of the rice market in Korea, the physicochemical characteristics and consumer perception of four domestic rice samples were compared with those of 11 foreign rice samples. Additionally, the influences of country of origin (CO) and price on purchase intent (PI) and willingness to pay (WTP) were investigated.
RESULTS: Consumer acceptance of rice samples from Japan was generally higher than that of rice samples from other countries. In an informed test, PI was affected by price and CO, while WTP was affected mostly by price. The PI decreased with the price provided while the WTP increased. In a blind test, consumers evaluated PI and WTP according to sensory liking. The PI was higher in the informed test than in the blind test in all domestic samples. Generally, consumer acceptance was highly correlated with fat acidity (r = − 0.76), protein content (r = − 0.72), and b value (r = − 0.64) of the rice samples.
CONCLUSION: Further efforts to increase the quality of rice are recommended for survival in the global market after liberalization of rice, even though consumers showed loyalty for PI of domestic samples. Copyright © 2011 Society of Chemical Industry