The virtual supermarket is a research tool for studying consumer food purchasing behaviour. In the virtual supermarket customers do virtual shopping in a digital environment. This makes it possible to research factors which influence purchasing behaviour, such as price, labeling and location of items. Participants receive a login for the supermarket which is linked automatically to a specific research term, such as a tax on soft drinks.
The virtual supermarket was conceived by VU University and built by SURFsara in 2008. It is a shared project of VU University and SURFsara and has been used for several other studies over the years, based on further developed versions of the supermarket software. The virtual supermarket has been used for research by VU University, the University of Oxford and the University of Auckland.