Brits increase their appetite for ethical food

by Tefal Team on 07 May 2019
  • In recent years, we’ve all started to pay more attention to where our food comes from and it seems we’re willing to put our money where our mouth is.

    Us Brits spent £8.2 billion on so-called ethical food last year, ramping up sales of everything from veggies stamped with the organic seal of approval to free range eggs.

    Back in 2013, the figure for such items stood at £5.7 billion, according to Mintel, and we’ve not reached a peak with this trend either.

  • In recent years, we’ve all started to pay more attention to where our food comes from and it seems we’re willing to put our money where our mouth is.

    Us Brits spent £8.2 billion on so-called ethical food last year, ramping up sales of everything from veggies stamped with the organic seal of approval to free range eggs.

    Back in 2013, the figure for such items stood at £5.7 billion, according to Mintel, and we’ve not reached a peak with this trend either.

  • Alice Baker, a research analyst at Mintel, said: “Ethical food and drink has enjoyed strong sales growth in recent years, but price poses a significant barrier to greater uptake.

    “This makes it imperative for companies to demonstrate to consumers how they can shop ethically without breaking the bank and how ethical products can – in some cases – even be the financially-savvy option.

    “Drawing attention more strongly to where standard own-label products have ethical certifications would allow retailers to demonstrate to shoppers that they can buy ethically and potentially save money too.”

  • Another issue is many consumers don’t know the difference between the accreditation schemes or what they actually mean.

    Most people understand free range when it comes to eggs, but are less aware that the standard can also be applied to poultry and dairy products, allowing animals to roam free for at least part of the day.

    Fairtrade certification means products have met a minimum standard to provide an adequate income for those who have actually produced things like cocoa beans and coffee.

  • The Red Tractor mark is an easy way to identify foods that are traceable, safe and farmed with care in Britain. It’s a useful indicator for parents looking for reassurance, as well as quality when doing the weekly shop.

    Anything labelled organic must be grown or raised without pesticides, fertilisers and antibiotics, not be interfered with by synthetic additives or processed using irradiation. Eating organic is seen as a way to cut down exposure to chemicals, boost nutrients and improve taste.

    Finally, products bearing the distinctive frog logo of the Rainforest Alliance have been certified as promoting sustainable practices and preventing the loss of biodiversity in nature.

  • As can be seen from these most common accreditation schemes, eating ethically has a number of different guises.

    Some organisations aim to improve conditions of animals, while others look to provide a proper living for producers or to preserve the planet.

    It can seem like a minefield in the supermarket aisles, but this latest research shows it’s something we all care about and that we’re becoming more savvy when it comes to ethical labels.

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