The Missing Link Between Corporate Social Responsibility and Consumer Trust: The Case of Fair Trade Products

Journal of Business Ethics 84 (1):1-15 (2009)
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This paper investigates the link between the consumer perception that a company is socially oriented and the consumer intention to buy products marketed by that company. We suggest that this link exists when at least two conditions prevail: (1) the products sold by that company comply with ethical and social requirements; (2) the company has an acknowledged commitment to protect consumer rights and interests. To test these hypotheses, we conducted a survey among the clients of retail chains offering Fair Trade products. The results show that socially oriented companies can successfully leverage their reputation to market products with high symbolic values.

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