Consumers of Organic Food

Background and methodology
The Swedish government has a political goal to increase ecological agricultural production. The proportion of consumers buying organically produced food in Sweden is relatively low and bread made with organically grown cereal is among the least frequently purchased organic products. In order to fulfill consumer demands for product quality and to meet their purchase criteria, extended organic wheat production requires not only successful product development, but also knowledge about the factors underlying consumer food choice. The aim of this study was to characterize the main value segment of consumers with special interest in organic products and to investigate possible differences in their sensory-specific liking of value bread. A consumer acceptance test was conducted on 184 consumers of organic products.

Results confirmed the main groups of the near universal structure of values suggested by Schwartz and revealed different segments among organic consumers. Consumption frequency was also related to the values. Consumer groups differed significantly in values and in liking of bread. Among the most liked breads were both organic and conventional breads. The majority of consumers considered that organic food taste better than conventional and that consumption of organic bread should increase. Moreover, about 50% declared that they would not buy an organic food product that was appreciably higher in price that a corresponding conventional food product.


Kihberg, I. & Risvik, E. (2007). Consumers of organic food – value segments and liking of bread. Food Quality and Preference 18:471-481.