Insights into South African sparkling wine : a sensory and consumer study

Mokonotela, Tshepo Tshiamo (2020-03)

Thesis (MScAgric)--Stellenbosch University, 2020.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: To be locally and internationally competitive, the South African wine industry needs to understand consumers’ preferences and purchase motivations. It is especially the sparkling wine category Méthode Cap Classique wines (MCC) that was identified as requiring further insights to develop marketing strategies that appeal to the South African (SA) consumer. This study used an explanatory sequential mixed method design to gain insights into how young (18-35 years old) SA sparkling wine consumer experiences the MCC product offering. A selection of five different styles, namely brut, brut rosé, demi sec, demi sec rosé and low alcohol were chosen. The first objective was to investigate and explore the sparkling wine category producers and growth, as well as the product’s sensory (taste and aroma) characteristics. This was accomplished by data mining of the wine industry information sources Platters South African Wine Guide and the South African Wine Industry Information Systems (SAWIS) database. The second objective investigated how the SA sparkling wine consumer experienced the five styles of MCC intrinsically. This was accomplished by actual tasting of the MCC wines by 278 respondents, who had previously been exposed to MCC or sparkling wine, combined with the completion of a closed-ended tasting questionnaire. The questionnaire included wine evaluation with a Check All That Apply (CATA) list where respondents had to select sensory attributes perceived by them, liking and likelihood to buy, price perception, preference ranking, familiarity with MCC, and product involvement. The third objective investigated young SA sparkling wine consumers’ familiarity with MCC, and their perceptions of the product’s extrinsic features, such as label design, bottle shape and colour, brand name, price, and packaging. This third investigation was done by means of using a semi-structured open-ended questionnaire in one-to-one interviews with 13 consumers who also participated in the tasting.Results of the quantitative phase showed that the respondents indicated an above average liking of the MCC wines tasted. They can distinguish between different styles of MCC in a blind tasting. The respondents liked the sweeter demi sec style the most, and the low alcohol style the least. The respondent’s price perceptions of the wines, based on intrinsic features, were lower than the actual retail prices; however, the price was perceived to be higher than retail prices when based it on the bottle extrinsic features. The respondents also rated themselves as more familiar with sparkling wine than MCC. In the subsequent qualitative approach, the respondent’s familiarity with MCC revealed that they possessed knowledge of the MCC and engaged with the product category. They find different occasions and opportunities to consume MCC that were not limited to formal celebrations, such as weddings or graduations. While occasion of usage is important, bottle appearance and price emerged as the main determinants of whether they would select a bottle of MCC for a specific occasion. Respondents were also aware that their choice of a bottle of MCC for a specific occasion, communicates non-verbal cues about them in a social context to their peers.This study has laid a foundation on how a selection of MCC wines are perceived in South Africa from respondents’ multiple perspectives. Although the study is not generalisable to the whole South Africa, the mixed method research strategy used provided insights into consumers’ perceptions and the use of mixed methods. Of these the preference for sweeter styles and nonpreference for lower-alcohol wines – these aspects can be investigated in follow up studies using the methodology established in this study.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Om plaaslik en internasionaal mededingend te wees, moet die Suid-Afrikaanse (SA) wynbedryf die verbruikers se voorkeure en motiverings vir aankope verstaan. Dit is veral die Méthode Cap Classique (MCC) vonkelwynkategorie wat geïdentifiseer is vir die ontwikkeling van verdere insigte in die SA verbruiker sodat toepaslike bemarkingstrategieë vir hierdie teikengroep ontwikkel kan word. Hierdie studie het 'n verduidelikende opeenvolgende gemengde-metode-ontwerp (explanatory sequential mixed method research design) gebruik om insig te kry in hoe jong (18- 35 jaar) SA vonkelwynverbruikers die MCC-produkaanbieding ervaar. 'n Seleksie van vyf verskillende MCC style, naamlik brut, brut rosé, demi sec, demi sec rosé en lae alkohol is gebruik. Drie duidelike geformuleerde navorsingsdoelwitte is gestel. Die eerste doelwit was om die produsente en groei van die vonkelwynkategorie en die produk se sensoriese kenmerke (smaak en aroma) te ondersoek. Dit is bewerkstellig deur dataontginning van die wynbedryf se inligtingsbronne Platters South African Wine Guide en die databasis van die Suid-Afrikaanse wynbedryfinligtingstelsels (SAWIS). Die tweede doelwit het ‘n kwantitatiewe fase behels en het ondersoek ingestel na hoe die SA vonkelwynverbruiker die vyf gekose style van MCC intrinsiek ervaar. Dit is bewerkstellig deur die werklike proe van die MCC wyne deur 278 respondente wat voorheen blootgestel was aan MCC of vonkelwyn. Die proeërs moes ook ‘n geslote vraag proe-vraelys voltooi. Laasgenoemde inligting is gekombineer met die proedata. Die vraelys het ‘n Check All That Apply (CATA) wynbeoordeling ingesluit waar 'n lys van sensoriese terme aan die proeërs aangebied is en waarvan hulle sensoriese eienskappe moes selekteer wat elke proeër waargeneem het tydens die wynevaluering. Inligting oor die visuele voorkoms van die wyn, die waarskynlikheid om die wyn te koop , pryspersepsie, voorkeurrangorde, vertroudheid met MCC en produkbetrokkenheid moes ook deur elke proeër verskaf word. Die derde doelwit het jong SA MCC verbruikers hul persepsies oor die ekstrinsieke eienskappe van die produk, soos etiketontwerp, bottelvorm en kleur, handelsnaam, prys en verpakking, ondersoek. Hierdie derde ondersoek is gedoen met behulp van 'n semigestruktureerde vraelys vir oop vrae in een-tot-een onderhoude met 13 verbruikers wat ook aan die proe (doelwit twee) deelgeneem het. Resultate van die kwantitatiewe fase (doelwit twee) het getoon dat die respondente 'n bogemiddelde voorkeur vir die MCC-wyne aangedui het. Hulle kon onderskei tussen verskillende style van MCC in 'n blinde proe. Die respondente het die soeter demi-styl verkies en die lae alkohol-styl die minste. Die respondente se pryspersepsie van die wyne, gebaseer op intrinsieke kenmerke, was laer as die werklike kleinhandelpryse; Die repondente se pryspersepsie was egter hoër as die werklike kleinhandelpryse toe respondent dit gebaseer het op die bottel-ekstrinsieke kenmerke. Die respondente het hulself ook beskou as meer vertroud met vonkelwyn as met MCC. In die daaropvolgende kwalitatiewe fase (doelwit drie) het dit in terme van die respondent se vertroudheid met MCC geblyk dat hulle oor MCC-kennis beskik en interaksie met die produkkategorie gehad het. Hulle het rapporteer dat verskillende sosiale gebeurtenisse en geleenthede om MCC te gebruik nie slegs tot formele funksies soos troues of gradeplegtighede beperk was nie. Alhoewel spesiale geleenthede vir die gebruik van MCC belangrik was, het die voorkoms en prys van die bottel na vore gekom as die belangrikste uitkomste op die vraag of hulle 'n bottel MCC vir 'n spesifieke geleentheid sou kies. Respondente was ook bewus daarvan dat hul keuse van 'n bottel MCC vir 'n spesifieke geleentheid nie-verbale leidrade oor hulle in 'n sosiale konteks aan hul eweknieë kommunikeer. Hierdie studie het 'n grondslag gelê oor hoe 'n seleksie van MCC-wyne in Suid-Afrika vanuit die meerdere perspektiewe van die respondente waargeneem word. Alhoewel die studie nie vir die hele Suid-Afrika veralgemeenbaar is nie, het die gemengde-metode-navorsingstrategie wat gebruik is, insigte gegee in die persepsies van die verbruiker en die gebruik van gemengde metodes. Hiervan is die voorkeur vir soeter style en nie-voorkeur vir wyne met 'n laer alkoholinhoud insigvol. Hierdie aspekte kan ondersoek word in opvolgstudies volgens die metodologie wat in hierdie studie bepaal is.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/107980
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