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Organic food sales in UK hit 10-year high driven by young shoppers

22 February 2017

Demand for organic food in the United Kingdom hit its peak in over a decade due to rising number of young shoppers coming into the market, according to traders.

Sales of organic products have increased by 7 per cent over the past year, against a 12.5 per cent drop in 2008, while Tesco had recorded 15 per cent growth for 2016.

Meanwhile, Waitrose, which laid claim to a 24 per cent share in the organics market, registered a 5 per cent sales rise.

According to Organic Trade Board chief executive Paul Moore, the message was being better understood by a young audience.

The lobby group said around 2 per cent of food on the shelves was all-natural but, its 2015 survey showed 48 per cent of families were consciously buying organic.

"It's all consumer driven," said Moore, who wants the UK to catch up with Denmark, where organics boast of a market share of nearly 10 per cent, The Telegraph reported.

"Shoppers perceive organic to be healthy, tasty and are deciding that it is worth the money. The organic message is becoming better understood, and all the evidence we see is it is increasing partly because of the young audience coming into the market.

"2015 predicted the market was mostly wealthy, older people, but we found 65 per cent of them had come into the market since 2009 after the recession.''

Areas that had seen the strongest growth included the fresh produce category in general, but particularly apples, carrots, salads and root vegetables, shot up by almost 17 per cent.

''Due to our long-term partnerships with suppliers and producers across the UK, we've been able to improve the quality, range, availability and price of our organic products for customers,'' said Tesco organic food spokesperson Tina Moore, The Telegraph reported.

''We are seeing that shoppers are increasingly looking to buy organic food but it needs to be affordable and consistently high quality all year round for it to be considered a viable option.

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