February 2, 2010
LONDONSupport for ethically produced foods in general has withstood the pressures of an 18-month recession and is growing, despite the tough economic conditions. In fact, nearly 30 percent of shoppers have specifically purchased locally produced food over the last month, double the number in 2006, according to new consumer research released by food and grocery analysts IGD.
These figures prove what we have been saying throughout the recessionshoppers are looking for both value and values. They are not simply looking for cheaper food in tough times, they also expect the grocery industry to support their moral and ethical values, said Joanne Denney-Finch, chief executive, IGD.
Survey respondents said their main reasons for supporting local food were it fresher and they wanted to support the local economy. Additionally, 57 percent said they purchased local food because it has not travelled as far and is fresher; 54 percent wanted to support local producers and farmers (up from 28 percent in 2006); 34 percent wanted to support local retailers (up from 18 percent in 2006); and 29 percent wanted to keep jobs in the local area (up from 14 percent).
When asked what improvements they would like to see to their food and grocery shopping experience 31 percent wanted more local products available to them, compared with 12 percent in 2005; 20 percent wanted a farmers market or farm shop to be established nearby, up from 15 percent in 2005.
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