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Organic Consumers: A Demographic Portrayal of Organic Vegetable Consumption within the United States

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  • Dettmann, Rachael L.
  • Dimitri, Carolyn

Abstract

The organic market sector is one of the fastest growing food sectors in the United States with growth rates in organic food sales averaging 18% per year between 1998 and 2005. The largest segment within the organic market is fresh produce, comprising 36% of retail sales in 2005. To date, no published studies utilize consumer purchase information to understand which demographic factors influence the purchase of organic vegetables. This analysis focuses on aggregate vegetable purchases, along with the top three organic vegetables procured by consumers in the 2004 AC Nielsen Homescan panel dataset: pre-packaged salads, carrots, and spinach. We approach our research questions in two phases. First, the probability a consumer purchases organic vegetables is estimated in a logistic model framework. Second, a Heckman two-stage model is utilized to depict the relationship of organic vegetable expenditures as a ratio of total household vegetable expenditures. Throughout both rounds of analysis, race, education level and household income consistently influence the odds of purchasing organic vegetables.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by European Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 105th Seminar, March 8-10, 2007, Bologna, Italy with number 7899.

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Date of creation: 2007
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Handle: RePEc:ags:eaa105:7899

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Keywords: Food Consumption/Nutrition/Food Safety;

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  1. Loureiro, Maria L. & McCluskey, Jill J. & Mittelhammer, Ronald C., 2001. "Assessing Consumer Preferences For Organic, Eco-Labeled, And Regular Apples," Journal of Agricultural and Resource Economics, Western Agricultural Economics Association, vol. 26(02), December.
  2. Gary D. Thompson & Julia Kidwell, 1998. "Explaining the Choice of Organic Produce: Cosmetic Defects, Prices, and Consumer Preferences," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(2), pages 277-287.
  3. Glaser, Lewrene K. & Thompson, Gary D., 2000. "Demand For Organic And Conventional Beverage Milk," 2000 Annual Meeting, June 29-July 1, 2000, Vancouver, British Columbia 36346, Western Agricultural Economics Association.
  4. Gary D. Thompson, 1998. "Consumer Demand for Organic Foods: What We Know and What We Need to Know," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 80(5), pages 1113-1118.
  5. Glaser, Lewrene K. & Thompson, Gary D., 1999. "Demand For Organic And Conventional Frozen Vegetables," 1999 Annual meeting, August 8-11, Nashville, TN 21583, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  6. Thompson, Gary D. & Glaser, Lewrene K., 2001. "National Demand For Organic And Conventional Baby Food," 2001 Annual Meeting, July 8-11, 2001, Logan, Utah 36139, Western Agricultural Economics Association.
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Cited by:
  1. Schroeter, Christiane & Cai, Xiaowei, 2012. "The Impact of Food Environment on Branded vs. Private Label Produce Choice," 2012 AAEA/EAAE Food Environment Symposium, May 30-31, Boston, MA 123197, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  2. Peterson, Hikaru Hanawa & Hustvedt, Gwendolyn & Chen, Yun-Ju (Kelly), 2008. "US Consumers' Willingness to Pay for Wool Product Attributes," 2008 Annual Meeting, February 2-6, 2008, Dallas, Texas 6747, Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
  3. Schroeter Christiane & Cai Xiaowei, 2012. "The Impact of Food Environment on Private Label versus Branded Produce Choice," Journal of Agricultural & Food Industrial Organization, De Gruyter, vol. 10(1), pages 1-23, November.

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