Journal article
Consumer perception of standards and labels for organic food

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Janssen, M.; Hamm, U.
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Berichte über Landwirtschaft
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From July 2010 on, prepacked organic food products will have to be labelled with the new EU logo. For many years, there have been numerous voluntary organic certification labels in Germany. This paper examines how consumers perceive differences between the organic standards behind the different labels. From the analysis, recommendations are derived for agrarian political decision makers at EU level, national and regional level as well as for private farmers' associations.
The focus group discussions with consumers showed that only a few participants could name specific differences between different organic standards. Some participants distinguished between high standards of the farmers' associations and the lower legal requirements. Many participants, however, were not aware of any differences. The new EU label for organic food was viewed rather critically by the participants. It was feared that the organic standards might be lowered and the control system was questioned. Hence, it is urgently recommended that comprehensive communication campaigns should be carried out when the new EU label is introduced, in order to gain consumer trust. In an interim phase, the Bio-Siegel should be used in addition to the mandatory EU logo so that consumers can easily recognise organic food. The farmers' associations will have to create a clearer distinction between their standards and those of the EU and put more emphasis on communicating the added values to consumers, if they do not want their logos to disappear from the market.

Last updated on 2019-25-07 at 14:11