On tiny plots, a new generation of farmers emerges

It is becoming almost a new fad in the market to see people making choices based on well-being, and health and taking the form of an altruist rather than just a consumer driven by price.  Many leading firms including The Body Shop, Starbucks and Toyota along with organizations such as PETA have already taped into this market as the demand for ethical, sustainable and local rootedness continue to become important buying factors for consumers.

A huge market that has able to develop and flourish in this altruist environment is the market for organic products. Although organic products and services are in comparison more expensive to conventional products, this market has seen substantial growth in recent years.  There are three major factors that enable small organic farms to stay competitive in the industry: a rising consumer demand for organic produce, a huge increase in farmers’ markets nationwide, and the growing popularity of community-supported agriculture[1].

A health conscious consumer is one type of persona but looking at the idea of an altruist consumer helps businesses build good will within their company. Cotton On is an example of a retail business that has developed goodwill by creating a foundation to help support children in poor communities. In every transaction they ask the customer if they would like to purchase a charity bag or bracelet to help support this foundation [2]. This is another example of how people are motivated to purchase on the basis of doing something beneficial for the wider community and where price plays little relevance.

[1] http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/environment/2009-07-13-young-farmers_N.htm

[2] Cotton On Group . 2012. Cotton On Foundation . [ONLINE] Available at:http://www.cottononfoundation.org/. [Accessed 27 June 12].


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