nternational food giant Heinz has recently again complained about the behaviour of Australian supermarkets Coles and Woolworths, complaining the Australian retailers’ homebrand strategy is creating an “inhospitable environment” for suppliers by restricting consumer choice.
The increasingly widespread use of homebrand, or “private labels” in Australia illustrates the ugly relationship between such strategies, “nudge” theory and the illusion of choice.
Developed by academics such as Richard Thaler, director of the Centre for Decision Research at the University of Chicago,nudge theory works along the lines that most of us will not do what we should unless we get a gentle nudge in the right direction.
Restricting our choices via regulation or other government intervention when it comes to eating unhealthy food, but widening the choices when it comes to healthy food to make us eat more healthy food, is an example of nudge theory.
Once the majority starts eating more healthy food then the rest of us will be nudged into following as we won’t to be left behind.