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On orange juice and primary/secondary market research

Published by Mark Bodnar

basic drawing of an orange-coloured bottle next to a orange that has been cut open

One of our marketing classes is going to be doing some primary research on Orange Juice this term.

If you're in that class, see below for some initial thoughts on resources that might be helpful as you frame your topic and design your study.

(And if you're not in that class, but just want a sample topic to use as you explore our powerful market research resources... read on!)

1. PsycInfo and Business Source Complete

In PsycInfo, start with this rough search for articles about OJ and consumers/marketing as well as this broader search  focused on consumer/market perspectives dealing with beverages in general and their nutrition/health aspects

TIP: Remember that even articles in which the countries, consumer groups, etc. studied aren't the same as your target group may still be useful! Do they have methodology details (even actual questionnaires) that you could replicate? Did they run into issues with their study designs that you could learn from? 

Sample articles: 

In Business Source Complete, start with this broad search, plus this version focused on academic journals to find such articles as the following.

TIP: Be sure to search both PsycInfo and Business Source Complete for research articles about your topic as the two databases cover different, though overlapping, groups of journals.

2. Primary research

Many of the articles above will give you methodology ideas, but you may also want to try these sources: 

  • Marketing Scales Handbooks 
    A series of books (and ebooks) that list the scales/questions used in published academic market research, all indexed by the topic each question was meant to measure. Search each one separately, and be sure to look for broader concepts such as taste perception, rather than just focusing on OJ.
  • PsycTESTS
    There's a good chance that other researchers have already developed and tested questionnaires to measure something close to what you are studying.  Where the Marketing Scales Handbooks allow you to drill down to the level of specific questions on your topic, PsycTESTS is more focused on complete questionnaires.  Need a Fruit and Vegetable Consumption among College Freshmen Measure, or maybe a Taste Preference Task?  Start with PsycTESTS!
    TIP: Don't check off the option to limit to fulltext in PsycTESTS as you will miss some good stuff! Scan the non-fulltext entries for any clues as to what articles the tests covered were published in, then search for those articles. For instance, The Taste Preference Task mentioned above is available in this article
  • Bonus... Ebook: Sensory Evaluation of Food: Principles and Practices: Scientific perspective, but it might help you understand some of the issues you'll need to prepare for in designing taste tests.

3. Passport

A keyword search for juice in Passport will dig up a lot of information, but I'd suggest browsing first: go to Industries (top of main screen) > then Soft Drinks  > then select the Juice category. Then explore the Statistics, Country Reports, and Analysis sections. This should get you market sizes and trends, brand shares, and such reports and articles as...

  • Juice in Canada
  • Juice in the US
  • World Reduced Sugar Juice Outlook
  • Organic Juice: An Expanding Source of Growth, with Challenges
  • Freshly Squeezed: The Global Juice Market in 2015

4. Statista

Statista can provide a shortcut to relevant statistics buried in articles and reports throughout the web (including some sources that aren't freely available).  

Try searches for  "orange juice", "fruit juice", and even more broadly: juice.

Examples of the barcharts you can find in Statista: 

TIP: Be sure to follow the links to original sources under the Source tab to the left of each of the charts. Sometimes the original sources of the data presented by Statista will have additional numbers and context to make your research easier.

5. Vividata

Vividata provides detailed data on Canadian consumers of different forms and brands of orange juice, including detailed data on the demographics and psychographics of those consumers. See this screen capture for a sense of the type of data available.

TIP: Vividata is very complex to use and understand. See this "Introduction to Vividata" guide and work through the practice questions before you dive into the full database. If you get stuck, ask for help!

6. IBISWorld

IBISWorld reports are on industries, rather than markets, but that perspective can also be useful. Look, especially, for the following reports: 

  • Juice Production in Canada 
  • Frozen Fruit & Juice Production in the US
  • Juice & Smoothie Bars in the US

    7. Industry associations

    As I was researching this topic, I came across some reports by industry associations. Such sources may help you understand your product/industry in more depth, and they may include new ways of describing your target products and typical consumer expectations/concerns. I thought I'd list one such source for you: 

    8. Taste Tests

    As a bonus for reading all the way down to the bottom, here's a link to an earlier post that I wrote on taste tests and primary research. I've duplicated some of those resources in this post, but not all of them. Remember (again) to think broadly -- beyond OJ, juice, or even just beverages -- when seeking information to help you design your study.

    From your instructor
    * Hoegg, J., & Alba, J. W. (2007). Taste Perception: More than Meets the Tongue. Journal of Consumer Research, 33(4), 490–498. https://doi.org/10.1086/510222
    * Lunsford, M., & Fink, A. (2010). Water Taste Test Data. Journal of Statistics Education, 18(1), 1-8.  https://doi.org/10.1080/10691898.2010.11889484


    I hope that's enough to get you started! If you need more, stop by the library to chat with my colleagues.

    Good luck with your research! 

    -- MarkB
    Mark Bodnar
    Business & Economics Librarian

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