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Explores and assesses consumer information processing problems from the perspective of older adults (65 and over) in order to optimize product choice. Using two product classes (bread and cheese), 580 subjects are studied in a controlled choice situation in an attempt to determine how older consumers, as compared with younger consumers, perceive and categorize items; select, weigh, and integrate product information; arrive at decisions of varying optimality; and subjectively react to making product choices. Also explored is the influence of such exogenous variables as sex, education level, shopping practices, and household status on product choice. Results indicate that older and younger subjects hold markedly similar views of product domains and that product class has the most profound effects on preference.

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