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Abstract

Indian consumers have been buying fish from the unhygienic fish markets, but of late fish has become available at many of the multi-format retail outlets. Consumers’ behaviour at organized fish retail outlets in Mumbai has been studied. The majority of consumers are young (25-35 years) and belong to upper middle class. Fresh fish is the preferred choice and about 60 per cent consumers have emphasized on freshness rather than price of fish. About 97 per cent consumers have recently shifted to organized retail outlets from local markets for purchasing fish. The majority of consumers (84.3%) have been found to be species-specific while buying fish. Quality and convenience have been found to be the major factors responsible for shift from local markets. Sensory evaluation of CIFE’s value-added products like fish munch, fish keema, prawn pickle and prawn masala have shown a positive feedback from the consumers as about 62 per cent have rated the parameters like taste, texture, odour, price, etc. highly. However, appearance and packaging have received average feedback, indicating the need to make products more attractive. A majority of consumers (72%) have shown willingness to buy these products and 95 per cent wish to try new products, in both fresh and processed forms, indicating changing consumption pattern in the urban areas. The study has argued that since the technology to prepare such products is already available with Central Institute of Fisheries Education, Mumbai and other institutes like CIFT, Kochi, this can be readily extended to the willing entrepreneurs and women SHGs.

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