A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

A new survey found out that people are surprisingly concerned with the impact of their food. Click through to see all the results.

2014-04-03

Co.Exist

3 Out Of 4 Food Shoppers Care About Sustainability In Their Supermarket Decisions

Americans are strongly in favor of foods that are better for society and the environment. And they want to know if they're eating GMOs.

Nothing motivates sustainable consumption like food. Shoppers want to know whether something is locally grown, organic, GMO (and so on) before they're interested in whether a car or pair of jeans is produced in the U.S., or made from pesticide-free cotton. Food has an emotional hold.

You can see as much from a new survey, which shows how high numbers of Americans consider sustainability issues when food shopping. Three-quarters (77%) rate sustainability as a priority, with issues like packaging and animal welfare figuring in their thinking.

The poll, conduced for Cone Communications, found that 89% think about where items are produced, that two-thirds would pay more for a local product, and that four-fifths (81%) want options that protect the environment. Three-quarters (74%) said they want companies to do a better job of explaining how their products affect the environment (presumably in a truthful way).

The survey was conducted online with a representative sample of 1,003 adults 18-and-over. "As the local food movement goes mainstream, it’s not just about the ‘mom and pop shop’ or farm stand. Even large companies have a role to talk about where they source food and the respective impacts on local communities," says Alison DaSilva, Cone's executive vice president, in a press release.

Interestingly, the survey showed strong support for GMO labeling: 84% want more disclosure (even though 55% also said they didn't know whether GMO food is good or bad for them). That could be significant at a time when many states are considering GMO labeling measures.

Women and millennials (aged 18-24) were most likely to care about food-related sustainability issues. For example, 73% of women would pay more for local food, against 60% of men, and 52% would sacrifice variety to eat local, compared to 38% of men.

[Image: Supermarket via Kunal Mehta / Shutterstock]

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3 Comments

  • Interesting survey! I am glad to see that finally people are starting to care about sustainability! My kids are taking part in a project that finances ideas related to food, nutrition and sustainability. http://www.barillagood4.com/en/ I think it is an interesting way to stimulate young minds, to support sustainability and, considering that next Tuesday is Earth Day, it's a good way to celebrate it! What do you think?

  • Stephen Stanley

    This is interesting.... If you ask me if I support puppies, I do, but am I on my way to the pound to adopt one? The question, do you support x, tells you one thing but to get to real support, you have to get to dollars. In other words, why are Kroger and Walmart vying for the nation's largest retailer instead of Whole Foods and Sprouts? We ultimately vote on issues like this with our dollars. While we sentimentally may support local growers and want less GMOs in our food, practically we buy Big Ag and GMOs with gusto. Add in the Walmart food stamp subsidy and you definitely get a picture of people not putting their money where their mouths (and sentiments) are.