Consumer Adoption of Organic Products Encouraged by Mainstream Brands, says RetailWire Business Tip

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The desire for organic products is now prevalent enough among mainstream shoppers that conventional grocers need a more broadly appealing organic selection. A RetailWire Business Tip, sponsored by Campbell's, looks at the route consumers take as they adopt organics and makes recommendations for retailers who want to "go mainstream" with organics in their stores.

According to The Hartman Group, over one-third of grocery store shoppers also shop in natural food stores. However, 78 percent of those would like to find organic products in their conventional grocery store, next to nationally branded items.

As discussed in the RetailWire Business Tip entitled "Bringing Organics into the Mainstream" (http://www.retailwire.com/Campbell_Soup), the new generation of healthy lifestyle retailers, like Whole Foods and Wild Oats, signals a wake up call for conventional grocery operators. It means that there's a real change occurring in the profile of the natural foods shopper towards more mainstream tastes.

Based on the Food Marketing Institute's "Shopping for Health" study, it can be assumed that more than half of all shoppers have bought some organic food in the past six months. That means that retailers will miss opportunities to satisfy customers if they continue to isolate organic products in natural foods sections. Other barriers to converting shoppers over to organics are the higher prices, less-than-satisfactory taste and unfamiliar brands that they often find in the natural foods specialty aisle.

As with all other product categories, branding is very influential to consumer purchasing and product loyalty. If given a choice, consumers will opt for the organic version of a product offered by a recognizable, mainstream brand.

As Campbell's is currently demonstrating with its new organic introductions in the PACE and PREGO brands, retailers can gain organic shoppers' attention by presenting large brand, organic products. PACE, for example, is the salsa/picante share leader with 36 percent national dollar share. Not only is a national brand like PACE more familiar to this new profile of organic shopper, but price and taste, often barriers to adoption with off-beat natural brands, are overcome in a PACE organic version.

With the introduction of mainstream brand versions of quality organic products, retailers' lives could get a lot easier as they look to tap into healthy lifestyle trends. Major brands such as Campbell's can offer grocers far more product development and marketing support. With the confidence that they are no longer simply appealing to niche consumer groups, we should expect to see much more in-store promotional activity for organic products, as well.

See the full RetailWire Business Tip:

"Bringing Organics into the Mainstream"

http://www.retailwire.com/Campbell_Soup
(Free registration required)    

About RetailWire.com    

RetailWire is a unique online news analysis and discussion forum, which launched in February 2002. RetailWire goes beyond conventional headline news reporting. Each business morning, RetailWire editors pick news topics worthy of commentary by its "BrainTrust" panel of industry experts, and the general RetailWire membership. The results are virtual round tables of industry opinion and advice covering key dynamics and issues affecting the retailing industry.    

Membership to RetailWire is free to all qualified retail industry professionals. Over two-thirds of members are in top executive or senior management positions, representing a broad cross section of retail channels and the companies that supply them.    

RetailWire is supported by sponsorships from leading retail suppliers and service organizations. Sponsorship packages take the form of information-rich "Business TIPS." Current sponsors include Campbell Soup, ACNielsen, Unilever, Hershey's, Nestlé Purina, DemandTec, Interactive Edge and Concept Shopping.    

Editorial inquiries, contact:

George Anderson

908-709-1690    

For general business inquiries, contact:

Rick Moss

973-744-0813    

For sponsorship information, contact:

Al McClain

203-975-0557    

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