The demand for organic foods is on the rise, leaving manufacturers and retailers to figure out how to make consumers happy by giving them what they want. Some traditional food sellers have begun selling organic foods alongside the specialty shops that have been doing so for years.
For the past several years, the organic food market in the United States has been very popular. Stores like Whole Foods Market and Trader Joe’s have specialized in foods with ingredients that meet organic specifications, but now, even mega chain stores like Walmart offer organic brands within their selection of products.
Furthermore, the consumer desire for organic foods is not just limited to the United States. Recent data shows that Germany is second only to the United States in terms of the popularity of its organic goods market. Just how in demand are organic foods in Germany? Enough to make up about four percent of the total food sales in the country, or a total of 䚿.9 billion, according to a recent news article.
It seems that the buying habits of German consumers are similar to those displayed by Stateside shoppers. Specialty retailers account for about half of organic food sales, but the other half occurs when people go to traditional food retailers that may have only begun selling organic foods relatively recently.
There is another interesting development in Germany that points to the need for companies that handle organic logistics. Since the year 2000, organic food sales in Germany have tripled. However, the country is unable to meet demand by relying on domestic suppliers and often has to get supplies imported instead.
Also, even though the United Kingdom has recently dealt with an economic crisis that caused some people to keep their food budgets low and potentially avoid organic items because of their cost, it has also seen very strong organic sales recently. Specifically, the market for organic foods there was £1.95 billion last year, which represents a total sales increase of £1.73 million compared to the previous year.
Notably, those numbers also indicate that shoppers are spending as much on organic foods now as they did before the economic downturn struck. Additionally, this is the third year in a row that organic food sales climbed in the United Kingdom.
Organic Foods Thought to Have More Nutritional Value
There are many reasons that people choose to buy organic foods. In many cases, they do so because they want to reduce their exposure to pesticides that are widely used to treat conventional foods during the growing process. The treatment of animals is another factor that frequently causes people to buy organic foods, especially if the products are marketed as coming from creatures that were not caged inhumanely and had opportunities to roam free. There are also people who believe that by eating organic foods, they are giving their bodies better nutrition. Although that advantage has been contested over the years, a research team from Newcastle University has released findings that may give even more momentum to the booming organic food market.
The scientists perused 196 academic papers about milk and 67 related to meat, and they found striking differences between the nutritional makeup of organic versus conventional products. They clarified that when people eat organic dairy and meat products, they take in a greater amount of certain minerals and antioxidants plus fatty acids that have nutritional importance. One of the study’s authors said that grass-fed animals that are raised outdoors regularly produce milk and meat that is higher in advantageous fatty acids such as omega-3s.
Besides reducing the risk of heart disease, omega-3 fatty acids may result in improved neurological functioning and development plus stronger immune systems. The European Food Safety Authority has even recommended that people double their intake of omega-3 fatty acids. In many cases, people think that in order to increase their intake of something, it’s necessary to eat more of it. However, in this case, all that people have to do in theory is decide to eat organic meat and dairy when possible rather than opting for conventional varieties.
Making Organic Foods Easier to Buy
Only a few short years ago, it was difficult for people who lived in some towns to find items like organic cereal. However, thanks to companies that handle organic logistics and ingredient sourcing combined, manufacturers can now get organically-certified ingredients in bulk by relying on a huge network of providers. This wider availability of organic ingredients has meant it is no longer time-consuming and cost-prohibitive for manufacturers to create organic versions of the foods their customers already love.
If recent trends continue, the demand for organic foods seems unlikely to slow down. Even major brand names are realizing that people want organic goods and that they need to meet these demands. Hellmann’s, the company responsible for making one of the most popular types of mayonnaise found in the United States, has announced it is selling an organic variety of its famous condiment. In addition to buying the original flavor, shoppers can also try organic versions of the Roasted Garlic and Spicy Chipotle flavors. The company says that customers had been asking for organic versions of the condiment for a while, and Hellmann’s is now at the point where it can respond by offering the sought-after item at a reasonable price around the United States.
Clearly, organic food is no longer a niche product, as demonstrated through several of the statistics cited in this piece. That’s good news for people who have been buying organic foods for the past several years in addition to those people who have decided to add more organic foods to their diets for a number of good reasons. If organic food sales continue to soar, coping with the demand will require continual cooperation from companies that handle organic logistics plus the willingness of manufacturers to trust that the marketplace is ready for a broader selection of organic options.