Consumers Increase Focus on Sourcing, Sustainability

Conscious shoppers are increasing their spend on organics, sourcing food products, seeking out non-GMO and buying sustainable “Farm to Table” food products traceable to local/regional farmers and producers, according to a study conducted by Market LOHAS and laz pr.

The 2013 MamboTrack Annual Natural and Organic Product Survey reveals that “Farm to Table” buying mirrors local food trends with conscious shoppers tracing their food products to regional growers and producers. In fact, about 7 in 10 or more healthy consumers sourced brands by reading package labels or in-store signage while more than 6 in 10 visited brand or product websites. Eco-seafood labels, Wild Seafood certifications and sustainable guides also influence sustainable seafood buying.

"Eco shoppers have moved beyond ingredient lists and are now focused on tracing the source of their food supply from Non-GMO to locally/regionally produced and Fair Trade,” said Karen Herther, co-founder of Market LOHAS. “Sustainable meat/poultry and seafood is gaining interest due to third-party certifications and heightened media coverage.”

Taste, ingredients and nutritional factors lead brand choice decisions, though price remains important, according to the study. Healthy cost-conscious consumers report continued high-purchase levels of retail store brand and private label natural and organic products. Additionally, price sensitive shoppers forecast a strong 2013 coupon outlook with 8 in 10 or more planning steady or increased usage and a majority using more digital, online printable and retail store coupons.

Shoppers are purchasing a variety of healthy organic, gluten-free and natural protein products as well, including sustainable ABF poultry/meat, eco-seafood and vegetarian protein across conventional and natural retail channels. Seven in 10 or more shop for natural and organic products at supermarkets, local health food stores, Whole Foods Market and regional specialty food outlets. And a majority buy healthy brands at non-traditional grocery outlets including mass merchandisers, online and price clubs.

Data from the 2013 MamboTrack Health and Natural Shopper Survey was gathered from online responses from 1,003 health and eco consumers.

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