What is it about?

The spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has unprecedentedly affected consumer behavior. This paper reflects on changes in food consumption, buying, and training (working out) habits in Hungary. Our I am is to broaden the literature with an analysis of the impact of the COVID-related lockdown on consumer behavior, with special emphasis on attitudes towards local food and other food purchases and physical activity.

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Why is it important?

We identify three groups. First, “Business-as-usual People” managed to maintain their daily routines. The frequency of buying local food decreased the least among them. The sedentary lifestyle of the next group, “Inactive savers”, appears to have been accompanied by a lower level of food intake. Accordingly, this group was possibly less subject to the negative impacts of obesity, but more in need of psychological support to avoid devastating mental health outcomes. The third group initially appeared to encompass “Couch Potatoes” based on their COVID-induced lifestyles.


The change in personal values as a result of an unexpected lockdown situation has been documented. The different demands in the consumer segments have been highlighted, which might help manufacturers, traders, and the stakeholders of the restaurants, and canteens in planning their promotions, as well as the design of government precaution campaigns

Professor Imre Ferto
Centre for Economic and Regional Studies, Hungarian Academy of Sciences: Budapest

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Growing couch potatoes? The impact of COVID-19 in the light of personal values in Hungary, Agricultural and Food Economics, March 2022, Springer Science + Business Media, DOI: 10.1186/s40100-022-00217-8.
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