Choice Architecture Effects on Indulgent Consumption: Evidence from Combinations of Nudges at an Ice-Cream Store

Ga-Eun, Grace OH*, Ralf VAN DER LANS, Anirban MUKHOPADHYAY

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


In response to growing interest in healthy diets, various choice architecture interventions (e.g., assortment organization, traffic-light labeling) have been introduced to “nudge” consumers to eat healthier. In two long-running field experiments at an ice-cream store, we examined how combinations of choice architecture interventions might work together to influence purchase decisions of quantity and choice, and further intake of calories and saturated fat. Consistent with prior literature linking mental representations of food healthiness with lateral orientations, we find that displaying “virtue” flavors to customers’ left reduces calories and saturated fat purchased, more so if virtue flavors are matched with green labels. These reductions are caused by a reduced purchase quantity and an increased choice likelihood of virtue options. The investigation of combinations of different choice architecture tools on purchase decisions and consumption consequences provides useful implications for researchers and practitioners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)450-460
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the Association for Consumer Research
Issue number4
Early online date30 Aug 2022
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge the invaluable help from Jacopo Contiero and Celine Wong, and the outstanding research assistance from Ashley To. This research was supported by Hong Kong Research Grant Council awards (CERG 642810 and CERG 692413) to the third author.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Association for Consumer Research. All rights reserved.


  • Choice Architecture
  • Behavioral Economics
  • Self-Control
  • Nudges
  • Traffic-Light Labeling


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