More and more health and environmentally conscious Americans are turning to organic food, and for good reason:
Concern over toxic pesticide residues. Concern over antibiotic drug residues. Concern over food poisoning. Concern over food irradiation, use of toxic sewage sludge spread on farmland, and genetic engineering, and concerns over the environment.
Fresh Produce is the top selling organic category
- Consumers purchase organic produce in conventional supermarkets, as well as natural food stores and club stores.
- Retail Sales of Organic Fruits and vegetables have increased fourfold from 1997 to 2008.
- Organic food is the fastest growing sector of the American food marketplace.
- Organic food sales have grown by 17 to 20 percent a year for the past few years while sales of conventional food have grown at only about 2 to 3 percent a year.
- Chefs ranked organic food as third on a list of the top 20 items for 2008. Also, more than half of fine-dining operators who serve organic food anticipated these items would represent a larger portion of sales in 2010. In addition, casual- and family-dining operators expected organic items to represent a larger proportion of their sales in 20010.
Other Points To Consider
- Consumers are willing to pay 30% more for Organic Fruit.
- Sales of Organic in conventional supermarkets is growing. In 2005 58% of organic purchases were in conventional stores, in 2008 72% were made in conventional grocery chains.
- The leading category in organic food sales remains fruits and vegetables, accounting for roughly 37% of total organic food sales. Sales of organic fruits and vegetables advanced 6.3% over 2008, below the 15.8% sales increases registered by organic food products as a whole.
- U.S. sales of organic food have grown from $1 billion in 1990 to over $20 billion in 2008. Organic food sales are anticipated to increase an average of 18 percent each year from 2007 to 2010.
- Global demand for organic products continues to grow, with sales increasing by over $5 billion a year, according to The World of Organic Agriculture: Statistics & Emerging Trends 2008.
- World organic food sales jumped from US $23 billion in 2002 to $52 billion in 2008.
- The world organic market has been growing by 20% a year since the early 1990s, with future growth estimates ranging from 10%–50% annually depending on the country.
- Organic foods are the fastest growing and most profitable segment of American agriculture, according to government statistics.