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Trends and Challenges in Global Business Management 376

Rural Consumer Behavior towards Elite Atta


P.N. Keerthi and Divya Vijayan

Abstract--- Small scale industries in food sector are growing day by day. Each and every company has to compete with
multinational company so hardly for their survival. The success of any organization depends upon the level of acceptance it
gains among its consumers. It is imperative that consumer behavior is essential to devise future strategies and to gain
advantage in the market. It is in this backdrop the study aimed to delineating the consumer behavior of Elite Atta as
perceived by its consumers. The study was based on primary and secondary data. Primary data were collected through the
survey method using structured questionnaire. A Sample of 100 customers of Atta were selected conveniently for the field
survey. The study is confined to Ayalur area of Nenmara, Thrissur only. Percentage analysis and satisfaction index were the
main tools used for analysis. The study found out that the consumers are satisfied with the availability of the Elite Atta but
they are not satisfied with the availability the product. The study suggested that Elite has to give more importance to their
promotional activities.
Keywords--- Attitude, Consumer Behavior, Strategies, Distribution Network, Consumer Satisfaction

I. INTRODUCTION

T HE food processing Industry is an important sector of the economy. It contributes about 18 % of Indian’s
manufacturing output and around 5 % of total industrial investment. However, the impetus in the sector during
1990-95 has slowed down in the past half decade. This is because of the realization by the market. Fruits, vegetables, fish,
milk, meat, milk products, poultry, packaged/convenience foods, soft drinks and grains are important sub sectors of the
emerging food industry. Health food and health food supplements are rapidly raising segment of this industry which is
gaining wild popularity among the health conscious public.
In recent years, the attitude of Keralites health and food habits has changed drastically. The people have become more
health conscious. Now a day there is a trend of switching over from traditional south Indian food rich in carbohydrates to
less caloric content. The common wheat powder or Atta is one such product that has gained popularity among different
sections of the population like patients, geriatric group’s people with obesity problem and children. Wheat is a species of
cereal grain grown for its seed especially in temperate climates. But has gained wide popularity as health food all over the
world and is being commercially promoted as a nutritious food substitute. Atta contains the highest quantity of protein of
any of the naturally occurring cereals grains. It has ample carbohydrates of high digestibility, except for fiber which has
desirable physiological properties.

II. STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM


Small scale industries in food sector are growing day by day. Each and every company has to compete with
multinational company so hardly for their survival. The success of any organisation depends upon the level of acceptance
it gains among its consumers. In today’s competitive environment the companies are realizing that marketing is not only
the voice of the company but also a tool with which information and feedback can be collected from the consumers. So to
capture the major market share and position itself in the market, the company has to understand much about the type of
consumers and their perceived attributes of preference for the product. It is imperative that the consumer behavior is
essential to devise future strategies and to gain advantage in the market. In this back drop the study aims at delineating
the consumer behavior of Elite Atta as perceived by its consumers.

III. OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDY


To study the consumer behavior towards Elite Atta

P.N. Keerthi, Research Scholar, Rural Marketing Management, College of Co-operation, Banking & Management. E-mail: keerthipn92@gmail.com
Divya Vijayan, Research Scholar, Rural Marketing Management, College of Co-operation, Banking & Management. E-mail: divuviju@yahoo.com

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Trends and Challenges in Global Business Management 377

IV. METHODOLOGY
The study was focused on Ayalur area of Nenmara in Thrissur district of Kerala, which is the major market for the
Elite Atta as it is close to the head quarters of the company. A sample size of 100 consumers was selected for the study.
The study used both primary and secondary data. Primary data were collected through survey among consumers of Atta ,
selected from the customer retail shops in Ayalur by using a structured interview schedule.The statistical tools like
percentages and satisfaction index were used for analysis.
1. Percentage analysis: For analysing the personal variables and variables related to consumer behaviour
2. Satisfaction index was calculated by giving various scores for various responses. The responses of the consumers
were collected on a five point Likert’s scale. The scores assigned to the response of the consumers were, highly satisfied,
5; satisfied, 4; no opinion, 3; dissatisfied, 2; highly dissatisfied, 1.
Consumer satisfaction index were calculated for the quality, its packaging, price, its promotional activities and
distribution. It is calculated using the formulae.

V. RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

Table 1: Distribution of Consumers on their Awareness about Elite Atta


Sl.no Indicators No. of respondents Percentage (%)
1 Yes & using Elite atta 32 32
2 Yes & used it 22 22
3 No 34 34
4 Yes&not using 12 12
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
From this table 13.32% are currently using Elite Atta. 22 percent are shifted from Elite Atta to other brands. It may be
due offers and excess advertisement and 34% are not aware about Elite Atta.
Table 2: Currently using Atta Brand
Sl.no Brands No.of respondents Percentage (%)
1 Elite 32 32
2 Aashirvad 40 40
3 Prince 28 28
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
From the above table 2 we can find that 40% of respondents are using Aashirvad Atta, 32% are using Elite Atta and
28% are using prince Atta.
Table 3: Distribution of Elite Atta based on Frequency of Purchase
Sl no. Interval of purchase No of respondents Percentage (%)
! Monthly 24 48
2 Twice in a Month 10 20
3 Weekly 4 8
4 Occasionally 12 24
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
Table 3 shows that 48 % of respondents are purchasing Elite Atta monthly, 20 % of respondents are purchasing Atta
twice in a month and only 8 % of respondents are purchasing Atta weekly. Rest of the respondents (12%) is purchasing
Atta occasionally. Occasion related to a particular purpose like ill health, child, old age care, etc.

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Trends and Challenges in Global Business Management 378

Table 4: Monthly Consumption of Purchase


Sl. No Quantity No. of respondents Percentage (%)
1 2 Kg 14 28
2 1 Kg 36 72
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
The results from the Table 4 give an indication of the purchasing quantity of Atta by the consumers. Most of the
consumers are preferring 1 Kg packets, around 72 % are purchasing it. The 2 Kg packets are preferred least by the
consumers.
Table 5: Distribution of Respondents Based on Mode of Consumption Atta
Sl. No Mode of consumption No. of respondents Percentage (%)
1 Regular food substitute 12 12
2 Breakfast 30 30
3 Food supplement 6 6
4 dinner 52 52
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
Consumers are using Atta for different purposes. Some may be using it for dinner others may be for breakfast etc.
from this study, we could find 52% are using Atta for their dinner, 30 percent are using for their breakfast and rest of the
respondents (18 percent) are using Atta either for their regular food substitute (12%) or as food supplement (6%).
Table 6: Reasons for Purchasing Elite Atta
Sl. No Reasons No. of students Percentage (%)
1 Quality 26 26
2 Advertisement 26 26
3 Price 32 32
4 Incentive offers 16 16
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
From the above table it can be inferred that, 32% of the respondents are purchasing Atta due to the persuading factor
price, 26% respondents are persuaded by quality and another 26 percentage by advertisement. The least influencing
factor is incentive offers provided by Elite Atta that is only 16 percent.
Table 7: Reasons for Atta Preference among Consumers
Sl.no Indicators No. of respondents Percentage
1 Reduce cholesterol 28 28
2 Control blood sugar 20 20
3 Manage pressure 8 8
4 Convenience of use 10 10
5 Reduce cholesterol & blood sugar 16 16
6 Reduce cholesterol & manage pressure 6 6
7 Control blood sugar & manage pressure 12 12
Total 100 100
Source: Compiled from primary data
The results from the table 7 shows that majority of the consumers are using Atta to reduce or control diseases such as
cholesterol, sugar, etc. Remaining 10 percent are using Atta for its convenience of use.
Table 8: Consumer Satisfaction towards Elite Atta
Sl.no Indicators Score Index
1 Quality of the product 361 72.26
2 Packaging 343 68.53
3 Price 398 79.6
4 Promotion 284 56.8
5 Distribution network 306 61.2
Source: Compiled from primary data

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Trends and Challenges in Global Business Management 379

Table 8 shows that price is the major determinant for the consumers satisfaction towards Elite Atta with the index of
72.26followed by quality and packaging. Promotion of the product was less influencing factor to the consumer
satisfaction towards Elite Atta.

VI. FINDINGS OF THE STUDY


• 13.32% are currently using Elite Atta. 22 percent are shifted from Elite Atta to other brands.
• 40% of respondents are using Aashirvad Atta, 32% are using Elite Atta and 28% are using prince Atta.
• 48 percent of respondents are purchasing Atta monthly, 20 percent of respondents are purchasing Atta twice in a
month and only 8 percent of respondents are purchasing Atta weekly.
• 52% are using Atta for their dinner, 30 percent are using for their breakfast and rest of the respondents are using
Atta either for their regular food substitute or as food supplement.
• 32% of the respondents are purchasing Atta due to the persuading factor price, 26% respondents are persuaded
by quality and advertisement.
• 90 percent are using Atta to reduce or control diseases such as cholesterol, sugar, blood pressure.
• Price is the major determinant for the consumer’s satisfaction towards Elite Atta with the index of 72.26.
Promotion should be more effective for the better consumer satisfaction towards Elite Atta.

VII. SUGGESTIONS
• Elite has to give more importance to their promotional activities. Since most of the consumers are from small
families and they are using this as solution for some diseases. Therefor the advertisements should focus more on
that factor and particularly on middle and old age segment.
• The packaging of elite Atta should also improve. The main use of packaging is protection and promotion. The
packets should always be very attractive to the consumers so that they can easily identify their brand among
other brands.
• Company should make available the Atta in convenient packets. Now many of the companies are coming with
sachet of Atta it will definitely help the consumers who use it occasionally. Elite also should come up with that
packaging policy.
• Company should provide some offers to the consumers such as price discounts and extra quantity which is given
by many competing brands. This can attract more consumers to their product.
• Since elite Atta with 32 percent of consumers has to compete with international and national brands it will be
best to promote it has a local brand with high quality.

VIII. CONCLUSION
Elite is one of the most famous brand in south India, which is known for its quality products. Elite strives to keep the
populace healthy and happy by providing nutritious and hygienic products at reasonable price. Their policy is to
continually improve the organization by supplying nutritious, tasty, safe and hygienic products to the consumers by
understanding end-users needs and expectations. In order to capture the market and increase the market share the
company should introduce more marketing techniques like increase the advertisement, introducing new quantity of
packets. More promotional methods must be framed by the company in order to increase their publicity and popularity.
Innovative thinking by the top level management is the only way for the company to become leaders in this sector. The
firm has a good reputation in this field provided they make out the consumers and live with the consumers.

REFERENCES
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ISBN 978-93-82338-84-0 © 2013 Bonfring