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Satisfying the indigenous food needs of Sub-saharan African immigrants in South Africa: A food consumption behaviour model for South Africa's leading supermarket chains
Njomo, Louis Mosake
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The fall of apartheid in South Africa has attracted a large number of immigrants from different parts of the world, predominantly from sub-Saharan Africa. Sub-Saharan Africans immigrate to South Africa mainly in search of greener pastures and for educational enhancement. However, in pursuit of their objectives, sub-Saharan African immigrants encounter numerous challenges. One of the main challenges encountered by sub-Saharan African immigrants in South Africa is the absence of indigenous foods in South Africa’s leading supermarkets. As a result, the majority of these immigrants are compelled to modify their taste and food needs to comply with available local products. Sub-Saharan African immigrants in South Africa also consume indigenous foods obtained from friends and relatives visiting South Africa and from ethnic entrepreneurs. However, ethnic entrepreneurs are perceived to be expensive, have poor quality products and a limited variety of stocks. As a result, the majority of sub-Saharan African immigrants in South Africa prefer to buy their indigenous foodstuffs from South Africa’s major supermarkets, in the case where they are stocked by these supermarkets. It is noteworthy that, South Africa’s leading supermarket chains acknowledge the potential of the emerging sub-Saharan African immigrant market and are interested in stocking indigenous food products from other sub-Saharan African countries. However, these supermarkets lack the knowledge and understanding of the market in order to establish marketing strategies to cater for their immigrant customers’ indigenous food needs. This study has established a food consumption behaviour model of the sub-Saharan African immigrants in South Africa.
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