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Beer and Wine Consumers' Perceptions of the Nutritional Value of Alcoholic and Nonalcoholic Beverages



ABSTRACT:  In general beer has not been portrayed as part of a balanced diet. However, red wine has been promoted as a beneficial part of a nutritious diet. The evidence is that beer is at least the equal of wine from a nutritional perspective and in countering ailments such as coronary heart disease. This study used surveys to compare beer and wine consumers' perceptions of alcoholic and nonalcoholic beverages. The consumers ranked 7 beverages based upon perceived healthfulness both before and after they were exposed to nutritional information about the beverages. The ranked data were analyzed using analysis of variance. The variance due to the 3-way interaction of place of recruitment, beverage, and ranking was found to be significant at P < 0.05. There was no significant difference between genders. Overall, consumers of alcoholic beverages perceived red wine to be more healthful than the other 6 beverages, including beer and white wine. The perceived healthfulness of a beverage does not appear to be the main factor driving the choice of beverage. Nutritional information does impact consumers' perceptions of the healthfulness of beverages. Consumers who are predominately beer drinkers were more heavily influenced by nutritional information than consumers who were predominately wine drinkers.

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