Why More Expensive Food just Tastes Better: Study


For some, nothing’s better than a crave case from White Castle. Yet for many, they may go for the more expensive grub over meals at fast food joints.

A recent study shows that more expensive food is typically deemed more delicious than its cheaper counterpart.

Researchers at Cornell University discovered that people will pay more for their meals with the idea that the food will taste better than those at a cheaper price. In fact, the idea that people associate cost with quality can ultimately influence what we taste and how our senses are activated during a meal.

For the study, researchers had 139 people eat at an Italian buffet in a New York restaurant, with the price set at either $4 or $8. Customers were then asked to rate the taste of the food and provide the quality of the restaurant overall.

Findings showed that customers who paid $8 for food were 11 percent more likely to enjoy their meal than those who ate at the $4 buffet. The study results also showed that people who ate from the $4 buffet were more likely to think that they overate, even though both groups consumed the same amount of food.

“We were fascinated to find that pricing has little impact on how much one eats, but a huge impact on how you interpret the experience,” said lead researcher Brian Wansink, a professor of consumer behavior at Cornell University, via a press release.


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