Effects of formula milk packaging design on breastfeeding Palestinian womenâ€™s purchasing decisions
Background: Although the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes states that â€˜labels should be designed to provide the necessary information about the appropriate use of the product so as not to discourage breast-feedingâ€™, baby formula manufacturers do not ignore the promotional role of packaging, and consequently
use various packaging elements to intensively advertise their products, with the aim of attracting more customers.
Objective: This study aims to identify the effect of formula milk packaging design, including visual and verbal packaging elements, on the purchasing decisions of Palestinian women who breastfeed. No previous research has examined the issue in Palestine.
Method: The study was based on a cross-sectional survey, as a primary source. The survey targeted breastfeeding women in the Gaza Strip, who were reached through health institutions, between November and December 2016. A stratified sampling technique was used to select 384 study participants. In addition, face-to-face interviews were conducted using structured questionnaires to collect data from respondents. A high response rate of 94.8% was achieved, with 364 completed and usable questionnaires. The data were analyzed using a binary logistic regression model to identify the effect of formula milk packaging design on the purchasing decisions of Palestinian women who breastfeed. The statistical tool employed in this study was factor analysis. Twenty-three variables related to
formula milk purchase decisions were identified.
Results: The findings prove that the visual packaging design of breast-milk substitutes has a positive effect on the breastfeeding Palestinian womenâ€™s purchasing decisions. It was revealed that breastfeeding women in GS are four times more likely to purchase formula milk when visual and verbal packaging is used. Packaging that incorporates
attractive colors, shapes and other visual characteristics seem to be effective in influencing mothersâ€™ decisions.
Conclusions: Visual and verbal packaging design affect the breastfeeding Palestinian womenâ€™s purchasing decisions. This indicates that baby formula companies are breaching the spirit of the International Code of Marketing of Breast-milk Substitutes, at least in the Palestinian context. [Ethiop.J. Health Dev. 2019; 33(1):59-61]
Keywords: Visual packaging design, verbal packaging design, breast-milk substitutes, breastfeeding womenâ€™spurchasing decisions, Palestine