Choosing processed ham in supermarkets or the economics of packaging

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Professor of Sociology, CERTOP (Centre d'études et de recherche : techniques, oragnisations, pouvoirs : Research centre for technology, organisations and authorities) -CNRS (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique : National Centre for Scientific Res

Seminar Business life | Friday July 3, 1998

Choosing four slices of ham in a supermarket is not as easy as it seems. It is not a case of "getting as much as possible for your money" as the traditional economic assumption suggests, or even getting value for money. Behind the concept of a single product, there are a number of different products. If one focuses on the criteria which determine choice, one immediately comes up against an essential element : the packager. Playing the role of the product presenter, he is the one who must anticipate consumer needs and prioritise the information he receives from each member of his team. His strategy is to make products as distinct as possible in order to categorise them better. This is also the way in which the consumer makes his choice. Ultimately, it is the way in which a true economic model of packaging works.

The entire article was written by:

Thomas PARIS

This session was published in issue n°15 of the Journal de l'École de Paris du management, entitled Gérer en souplesse .

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