In a recent article from “Fastcoexist.com” young American consumers care about their food, but they’re also entirely baffled by what they’re eating. When brand consultancy BFG surveyed 300 shoppers in late September, they found that nearly 70% were buying some organic food, but only 20% thought they could define what “organic” means.
BFG, whose survey respondents were mostly under 35, found that more than half qualified as “concerned, but confused.”
“What I think we’re seeing in grocery stores is that consumers are ultimately idealists,” explains BFG CEO Kevin Meany. “They desire honesty. They want to believe. They trust the label, and they’re willing to pay more based on that for something like ‘all-natural’ even though they’re not totally sure what it means.”
Major grocery chains like Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s have been slapped with lawsuits in recent years over the frequent use of “all natural,” “natural,” and “organic” labeling on products with questionable ingredients. The FDA does regulate these terms, but consumer advocacy groups point out that the agency’s definitions are fairly loose. Nevertheless, the appeal of authentic food has grown so much in recent years that even products like Kraft Singles are getting the farm-fresh branding treatment—even if marketers have to skirt around the technical limitations of a cheese “product” (rather than actual cheese).
More than 70% of BFG’s survey respondents said that they agreed some food labels were meaningless, but 37% said they still “trusted” the label’s intent. Similarly, 59% of respondents said they were concerned about genetically modified organisms (GMOs), but only 32% could define what a GMO was. Then again, that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Last month, Jimmy Kimmel put a spotlight on American cognitive dissonance when he interviewed GMO-eschewing patrons of a farmers’ market on what “GMO” meant. “Genetically monit… I don’t know, what is it?!” They didn’t do so hot.
Jimmy Kimmel had something to say about this… and did some investigation. Watch the video and I know you will see the problem… many people do not know
what GMO’s are and could not elaborate enough… even though they stated that they try to be GMO free.
The reality is that this is the way it is. Once people really know, and really understand the differences… you get an entirely different response.
I know most of our readers fully understand the effects of genetically engineered food – and the video points out that we really need to step up the education regarding GME food. This is a big deal to me and to us here.