The vast majority of American families now buy organic foods, according to a study released today by the Organic Trade Association (OTA), the 2011 U.S. Families' Organic Attitudes and Beliefs Study.
78% - more U.S. families than ever before - say they buy organic foods, and 40% of families are buying more organic products than they did a year ago. 30% say they are buying organic for the first time.
"In a time when the severity of the economy means making tough choices, it is extremely encouraging to see people vote with their values by including quality organic products in their shopping carts," says Christine Bushway, OTA Executive Director.
The US organic industry grew 8% in 2010, and is one of the few industries that's adding jobs.
48% of parents surveyed say their strongest motivator for buying organic is their belief that organic products "are healthier for me and my children." They cite concerns about the effects of pesticides, hormones and antibiotics on children, and the desire to avoid highly processed or artificial ingredients.
It's been nearly 10 years since the federal organic program was implemented with the now ubiquitous "USDA Organic" seal. 72% of parents says they're familiar with the seal, USDA up significantly from 65% in 2009.
For the study, OTA, in partnership with KIWI Magazine, polled nearly 1,300 U.S. families about their attitudes and behaviors relating to organic foods. This is the third year the study has been conducted.