Veganism: Theory of planned behaviour, ethical concerns and the moderating role of catalytic experiences

Clare D’Souza, Anne Brouwer, Stephen Singaraju

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


The growing movement of veganism culture is drawing increasing scientific attention but falls short of an empirical investigation to examine antecedents and catalytic experiences for maintaining vegan diets. An integrated theoretical framework is proposed using the Theory of Planned Behaviour Model (TPB) and includes ethical concerns to investigate the interrelationships. Comparisons are also made by adopting the strength of high and low ethical catalytic experiences of each consumer group to identify moderating results. The proposed conceptual model was tested using Structural Equation Modelling from the responses of 478 vegan consumers. Results indicate that the TPB factors exert positive effects on the buying intention and ethical concerns mediate the relationship between attitudes and intention, as well as between PBC and intention, however, social norms did not impact ethical concerns.

While consumers experiencing high catalytic experience had no significance, low catalytic experience consumers showed an inverse significant moderating relationship on PBC and maintaining vegan diets. Whereas the relationship for ethical concerns influencing the intention to buy vegan foods was significant and positive for the high catalytic experienced consumer, but not significant for the low catalytic experienced consumer. The moderating results for social norms were not significant on ethical concerns for the high catalytic experienced consumer but were negatively significant for the low catalytic experienced consumers indicating that the effect of peer pressure increase, results in a decline for ethical considerations.

These findings offer strong theoretical and practical implications by contributing to the understanding of consumers’ behavioural intention to undertake vegan diets and extending our knowledge for formulating retail strategies to effectively tailor their offerings for this consumer segment.
Original languageEnglish
Article number102952
JournalJournal of Retailing and Consumer Services
Publication statusPublished - May 2022
Externally publishedYes


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