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Title: Consumer perceptions and demand for organic food in Australia: Focus group discussions
Contributor(s): Chang, C  (author); Zepeda, L (author)
Publication Date: 2005
Open Access: Yes
DOI: 10.1079/RAF2004103
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Abstract: In Australia, the retail value of organic food production was estimated at A$250 million, with farm-gate value at around A$90 million and exports at around A$40 million, in 2002. The current share of organic sales in total food sales in Australia is about 1%. The growth rate in organic production was forecast to continue at 10–30% per annum. Despite the positive outlook, there are consumer concerns about product recognition and product integrity. To understand how demand for organic products is changing, it is important to investigate consumer attitudes and knowledge about these issues. The objective of this study was to identify issues that may hinder or promote demand. Given the qualitative nature of these issues, we used a focus group study to probe consumers. While focus group results are a qualitative approach and not intended to be generalizable, the results suggest directions for future research. The participants raised concerns about the use of chemicals, the treatment of farm animals and the environmental impact of food production. Organic food consumers were found to be more knowledgeable about organic foods, as well as being more tolerant of higher prices and inaccessibility. The results also suggest that increasing consumers' awareness of organic farming and certification, as well as the availability of organic foods, may be the most effective way of moving organic foods into mainstream.
Publication Type: Journal Article
Source of Publication: Renewable Agriculture and Food Systems, 20(3), p. 155-167
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Place of Publication: United States
ISSN: 1742-1705
Field of Research (FOR): 140201 Agricultural Economics
Peer Reviewed: Yes
HERDC Category Description: C1 Refereed Article in a Scholarly Journal
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Appears in Collections:Journal Article
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