CHICAGO — In a recent study conducted by Mintel, more than half the respondents surveyed (52%) said it’s more important to them to buy local produce than organic options.
Mintel's Global New Products Database also revealed that product launches of fruit products with a natural/organic claim have declined 58% between 2008 and 2011, while the launch of new vegetable products with that claim have decreased 77% in that same time period.
Price could be a factor and so could consumer’s increasing interest in the freshness of their food. The perception may be that locally sourced food is fresher. In a food service study earlier this year, Mintel concluded that "consumers’ interest in where food comes from and a desire for fresh, unprocessed food will lead more [restaurant] operators to focus on American regionalism."