A recent survey by the Sheldon Group (Knoxville, Tenn.) that queried 1,013 Americans finds Americans most want to see “Natural,” “Organic” or “Grown in the USA” claims on their food products.
Asked “Which is the best description to read on a food label?”, 25 percent of consumers said “100 percent natural” or “All natural.” Another 24 percent said “USDA Certified Organic” or “100 percent organic.” However, some 17 percent preferred “Grown in the USA.”
“…we believe the popularity of ‘Grown in the USA’ reflects three important trends,” said Suzanne Shelton, president of Shelton Group. “First, Americans are increasingly worried about food contamination, and they’re concerned about water treatment and crop fertilization in other countries. Second, there is growing support for family farms and local sourcing — a trend that’s gone mainstream in the last several years, including at Wal-Mart. “And finally, people are concerned about the economy and job losses, so buying ‘Grown in the USA’ is a way to help fellow Americans,” Shelton said. “Red, white and blue is the new green.”
So, a previous Global Food Forums blog noted that consumers often reach for “natural” claims since they often offer a less expensive alternative to “organic,” without understanding they mean two different things. The question that remains is “Are Americans willing to pay more for ‘Made in America’ foods and food ingredients?