Consumer trust in organic food and organic certifications in four European countries

Blain Murphy, Mara Martini, Angela Fedi, Barbara Lucia Loera, Christopher Elliott, Moira Dean*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

As the European organic market accelerates its growth, consumers are increasingly looking for produce that can be trusted, sustainably produced and environmentally friendly. Over the last decade, organic research has shifted to faster growing markets in Asia, despite fraudulent organic food still being an issue in Europe. This study addresses this gap by investigating the differences in consumers trust in organic meat and vegetables across 4 European Countries (Germany, Italy, Poland and the UK). In this study an online cross-sectional survey utilising validated tools was designed and data collected from 2071 respondents, approximately representative in terms of gender, age and region per country. Results identified between country differences in trust and beliefs in the ‘organicness’ of the produce. Overall, consumers had a high levels of trust in certified organic food chain and produce, and strong beliefs in the benefits of certification bodies; however this differed between countries. Italy and Poland respondents reported higher overall trust and preferred EU certification; whilst the UK and Germany reported lower trust and preferred their national certification bodies. Similarly, there were interesting differences between the products and national preferences. The findings highlight opportunities especially in Germany and the UK, for private industry, national and world-level bodies to improve the sustainability and growth of the organic food market.
Original languageEnglish
JournalFood Control
Early online date22 Oct 2021
DOIs
Publication statusEarly online date - 22 Oct 2021

Keywords

  • Organic crops
  • Trust
  • Food
  • Consumer Science

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