U.S. Organic Sales Up Over 17 Percent in 2008

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U.S. Organic Sales Up Over 17 Percent in 2008

According to the Organic Trade Association (OTA), which has released the results from its 2009 Organic Industry Survey, U.S. sales of organic products, both food and nonfood, reached $24.6 billion by the end of 2008, growing an impressive 17.1 percent over 2007 sales, despite tough economic times. While the overall economy has been losing ground, sales of organic products reflect very strong growth during 2008.

“Organic products represent value to consumers, who have shown continued resilience in seeking out these products,” said Christine Bushway, OTA’s executive director.

The survey, conducted by Lieberman Research Group on behalf of Greenfield, Mass.-based OTA, measured the growth of U.S. sales of organic foods and beverages, as well as nonfood categories such as organic fibers, personal care products and pet foods, during 2008. Results show that organic food sales grew in 2008 by 15.8 percent to reach $22.9 billion, while organic nonfood sales grew by an astounding 39.4 percent to reach $1.648 billion. As a result, organic food sales now account for approximately 3.5 percent of all food product sales in the United States. The final report includes an executive summary, as well as organic food and beverage dollar sales and growth, distribution of organic food and beverage sales by channel, an organic food forecast, organic nonfood item, and organic labeling certification and materials supply.

The report provides sales, growth and channel shares for such food subcategories as beverages, breads and grains, dairy, fruit and vegetables, meat, and snack foods, as well as nonfood subcategories including supplements, personal care, household products and cleaners, and pet food.

With tough economic times, consumers have used various strategies in continuing to buy organic products. Because most venues now offer organic products, consumers have the opportunity to shop around. Increased use of coupons, the proliferation of private label brands, and value-positioned products offered by major organic brands all have contributed to increased sales. The final report of the Organic Trade Association’s 2009 Organic Industry Survey is now available for purchase at http://www.ota.com/bookstore/2html. For questions about ordering the report, e-mail [email protected].