Shoppers Willing to Spend 31% More on Sustainably Produced Food

Conscious Consumer Survey

by | Oct 17, 2014

Conscious Consumer SurveyAmericans are willing to spend, on average, 31 percent more per week on sustainably produced grocery food, according to a study by Gibbs-rbb Strategic Communications.

The Conscious Consumer Study was conducted online in August among 2,010 US adults by Harris Poll on behalf of Gibbs-rbb.

Key findings include:

On average, Americans are willing to spend 31 percent extra per week on safe and sustainably produced grocery food. US households spend an average of $119.30 per week on grocery food, and consumers are willing to pay an additional $37.30 per week on food that is produced in ways that advance the well-being of the planet, humans and safety of food sources.

Controversial news emerging from food supply chains can affect consumer loyalty. With price being equal, most Americans say they are likely to switch from a food brand they trusted if they learn that the company was involved in product recalls (77 percent), practices that harm animal welfare (73 percent) or irresponsible labor practices (72 percent).

Health, safety and waste reduction are significant considerations in decisions to buy food. With price being equal, most US adults consider nutritional content (88 percent), food safety (87 percent) or food waste (78 percent) as important when making food purchases for their households.

Trusted personal contacts, journalists, retailers and food businesses are important sources of information about the corporate social responsibility activities of food companies. Most Americans rate word-of-mouth discussions (71 percent), news media (68 percent), content supplied by food retailers (66 percent) and content provided directly by food companies (66 percent) as important in their efforts to learn how food companies advance the well-being of the planet, humans and safety of food sources.

More women than men say green packaging and workplace conditions are key considerations in their food shopping choices. With price being equal, female consumers are more likely than their male counterparts to consider sustainable packaging (76 percent versus 69 percent) and labor practices (72 percent versus 64 percent) to be important when making food purchases for their households.

Meanwhile, another report published earlier this month found 54 percent of Americans say they would like to buy brands that let them support well-being and sustainability in the coming year. Havas PR’s BeCause It Matters report examines how environmentally and socially responsible companies can connect more effectively with “conscientious consumers.”


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