Scientists Gain More Insight Into How the Brain Works When We Shop

Scientists from Bangor University in the UK conducted a study to find out what goes through shoppers’ minds when they pick up supermarket bargains. Simulating a typical $100 weekly grocery trip, volunteers were advised to choose from an array of discounts and buy-one-get-one-free deals displayed on a screen while inside an MRI. The study analyzed the rational and emotional workings of the brain while shopping. What it showed is that 20% of shoppers are likely to put special offers in their baskets, even if they’re more expensive than the normal product. Nearly 50% of shoppers ignored buy-one-get-one-free items, opting to choose just one. Results suggest that consumers only respond rationally and mathematically for the first 23 minutes of their shopping trip, after which they begin to think with the emotional part of their brain, which can only guess at value for money. After 40 minutes — the time taken for a typical weekly grocery trip — the brain becomes tired and effectively shuts down, ceasing to form rational thoughts altogether.

Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020

Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020

On This Day

1869 - Thousands of businessmen were financially ruined after a panic on Wall Street. The panic was caused by an attempt to corner the gold market by Jay Gould and James Fisk.

Fact of the Day

In Japan, if a working day falls between two public holidays, that working day becomes an additional holiday by law, also known as “Citizen’s Holiday.”

Nature Oddities

When jaguars eat the leaves of the yaje plant, the are affected in much the same way as domesticated cats are affected by catnip.

Food and Drink

Tater tots were invented in 1953 when Ore-Ida founders were trying to figure out what to do with leftover slivers of cut-up potatoes. The product was first offered commercially in stores in 1956.
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