Article: Responsible Marketing in the Traffic Light Labeling of Food Products in Ecuador: Perceptions of Cuenca Consumers

Responsible marketing (RM) helps companies make products that improve people’s lives and is in line with public policies that provide a positive impact on society; an example of this is traffic light nutritional labelling (TLNL). Ecuador was a pioneer in Latin America in the mandatory implementation of TLNL. For this reason, this research aimed to analyze RM in the TLNL of food products from the perception of consumers in the urban area of Cuenca, Ecuador. Specifically, the research aimed to answer: What is the degree of consumer understanding of TLNL in the urban área of Cuenca, Ecuador? A cross-sectional investigation was undertaken, with 384 surveys conducted. A chi-square test ( 2) was performed, which showed the relationship between variables reflecting RM knowledge and the understanding and use of TLNL. An ordinal logit model (OLM) was applied, showing that the variables of education, knowledge of labeling, and knowledge of marketing were associated with a greater probability of having some level of understanding of TLNL. Finally, a binomial logit model (BLM) revealed that the variables of income level, knowledge of TLNL, illnesses, confidence in TLNL, the influence of COVID-19 on eating habits, and knowledge of marketing were associated with people being more likely to use TLNL. RM is present in the TLNL through the clear and understandable dissemination of information.