The organic food aisle is often thought of as the domain of the super health conscious. But according to a soon-to-be released report by the Hartman Group, customers’ motivations for buying organics extend beyond the perceived nutritional value of the products.
Consumer researchers found that beneath organic foods’ healthy “halo,” the absence of negative ingredients is a major reason people purchase products labelled organic.
The products’ lack of pesticides, herbicides and growth hormones ranked No. 1, 2 and 3 in a customer survey on why shoppers buy organics.
“Organic gained prominence for the many other quality and health notions it represents, like authentic [and] pure,” said Laurie Demeritt, president of Washington-based Hartman Group, in a press release.
Organic products continue to rise in popularity. The researchers found that over one-third of all U.S. consumers buy organic products at least monthly. That represents a three per cent increase since 2010.
This is good news for grocers and organics-enthusiasts who got a jolt earlier this month when Stanford University released a highly-publicized study questioning the advantages of eating organic.
The authors concluded that there was no “strong evidence that organic foods are more nutritious or carry fewer health risks than conventional alternatives.”