The European Consumers' Understanding and Perceptions of the "Organic" Food Regime

Bernt Aarset, Suzanne C. Beckmann, Enrique Bigne, Malcolm Beveridge, Trond Bjorndal, Jane Bunting, Pierre McDonagh, Catherine Mariojouls, James Muir, Andrea Prothero, Lucia Reisch, Andrew Smith, Ragnar Tveteras, James Young

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


    This paper explores consumer understanding and perception of organic food, with specific reference to the relatively new concept of organic farmed salmon. Key themes associated with the term “organic” and its meaning, as determined by consumers, are explored and the role of labelling and regulatory authorities considered. Focus groups in five countries (UK, Germany, Spain, Norway and France) consisting of 196 participants showed that most consumers are confused about the meaning of the term organic and are largely unaware of the organic certification and labelling process. Many consumers were unsure, even sceptical about the concept of organic farmed salmon and display a large amount of distrust in the regulatory process. The implications for the concept of organic food and salmon production and directions for further research are discussed.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalBritish Food Journal
    Issue number2
    Pages (from-to)93-105
    Publication statusPublished - 2004


    • Europeans
    • Consumers
    • Organic foods
    • Regulation

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