Sorry for interrupting, this website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Learn more
Accept & Close

The Locavore: Attitudes toward Locally-Sourced Foods - US - February 2014

“As local claims become more widespread, product marketers will need to develop a means to authenticate provenance. Exploring a system of official certification and communicating a transparent path to market information to interested buyers will be necessary to stand apart from the competition.”

– Beth Bloom, Food and Drink Analyst

Some questions answered in this report include:

  • What’s the draw of local food and drink?
  • Who is the local food and drink consumer?
  • Is buying local perceived to be affordable?
  • What are the limitations of local food and drink?

Some 96% of respondents to Mintel’s custom consumer survey purchase what they consider to be local food or drink, with 53% doing so at least once a week. Data from the USDA show that the number of farmers markets in the US has increased annually over the last 19 years. Indications point to a growing demand for food and drink that comes from somewhere close to home.

This report examines attitudes toward local food and drink, including defining what local means to consumers, and looks at their motivations for buying local. General market trends in local food and drink availability are also explored in an effort to paint a picture of what shoppers want, what the marketing currently offers, and the opportunities for meeting consumer needs in years to come.

This report covers general consumer attitudes toward and inclinations to purchase local food and drink. The term locavore is sometimes used to describe a consumer who seeks out locally grown food and beverage products whenever possible. As will be explored, the concept of what determines “local” is open to definition. Much of the data shown in this report is based on responses to a custom consumer survey fielded in November 2013, assessing consumer attitudes toward local food and drink as well as their local shopping habits.

It builds on the analysis presented in Mintel’s Living Local – US, April 2014, Local Procurement – US, February 2009. Other relevant reports include Marketing to the Green Consumer – US, March 2013, Attitudes Toward Corporate Social Responsibility – US, September 2012, Marketing to the Green Consumer – US, April 2012, Foodservice Green and Sustainability Initiatives – US, September 2011, Cause Marketing – US, August 2011, Green Marketing – US, April 2011, Green Living – US, February 2011, and Attitudes Toward Social Responsibility – US, September 2010.

What you get

What's included

Why buy from us?

Succeed

Our reports will provide you with market data, consumer research and competitive intelligence to succeed in your market.

Instant Access

Buy now and you'll have instant access to the information you need to make the right decisions.

Opportunities

Find out what's next in the markets that matter to you: where opportunities lie and what challenges you will face.

Trusted

A business Superbrand, Mintel is a source you can trust. We have been defining and refining the Market Intelligence mix since 1972.

Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Consumer survey data
            • Abbreviations and terms
              • Abbreviations
              • Executive Summary

                  • Majority of consumers define local as 100-mile radius or in-state
                    • Figure 1: Consumer definition of local, November 2013
                  • Fruit and vegetables are most frequently purchased local foods
                    • Figure 2: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by top five categories, November 2013
                  • Freshness and community support lead reasons for buying local
                    • Figure 3: Top five reasons for buying local food and drink, November 2013
                  • While price perception does not appear as a barrier to entry, lowering prices would increase participation
                    • Figure 4: Top five factors that may encourage increased local food purchase, November 2013
                  • Percentage of “local” food launches on the rise
                    • Figure 5: Local food and drink launches as percent of total food and total drink launches*, by super category, 2009-13
                  • What we think
                  • Issues and Insights

                      • What’s the draw of local food and drink?
                        • Issue
                          • Insight: Promote product freshness and community support
                            • Who is the local food and drink consumer?
                              • Issue
                                • Insight: Varied consumer base requires targeted messaging
                                  • Is buying local perceived to be affordable?
                                    • Issue
                                      • Insight: Enhance short-term price promotion and long-term education efforts
                                        • What are the limitations of local food and drink?
                                          • Issue
                                            • Insight: Stay ahead of the questions
                                            • Trend Application

                                                • Trend: Prove It
                                                  • Trend: Factory Fear
                                                    • Mintel Futures: Old Gold
                                                    • Market Factors

                                                      • Number of farmers markets in the US has grown steadily
                                                        • Figure 6: Number of farmers markets in the US, 1994-2013*
                                                      • Call for increased fruit and vegetable consumption
                                                        • The farm bill supports a focus on local
                                                        • Innovations and Innovators

                                                          • Bringing local food to consumers
                                                            • Community supported agriculture (CSA)
                                                              • Good Eggs connects consumers with local providers
                                                                • Expanding availability through urban farming
                                                                  • Large retailers promote local offerings
                                                                    • Safeway features local suppliers in ads
                                                                      • Figure 7: Safeway, “Freshest Produce,” TV Ad, 2013
                                                                    • Fred Meyer
                                                                      • Figure 8: Fred Meyer, “Northwest,” TV Ad, 2013
                                                                    • Whole Foods Market’s Local Producer Loan Program
                                                                      • Bringing shoppers to the food
                                                                        • Local in retail
                                                                          • Percentage of “local” food launches small, but sees slight increase
                                                                            • Figure 9: Local food and drink launches as percent of total food and drink launches*, by super category, 2009-13
                                                                          • Local food launches outpace local drink launches from 2009-13
                                                                            • Figure 10: share of local food and drink launches*, by super category, 2009-13
                                                                          • Dairy leads local food launches
                                                                            • Figure 11: Local food launches*, by category, 2009-13
                                                                          • Alcohol leads local drink launches
                                                                              • Figure 12: Local drink launches*, by category, 2009-13
                                                                            • Big brands attempt appeal through local community support
                                                                            • Consumer Definition of Local Food and Drink

                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                • Majority of consumers define local as 100-mile radius or in-state
                                                                                  • Bakery, eggs, fruit, and vegetables should be close by, prepared foods get a reprieve
                                                                                    • Figure 13: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category, November 2013
                                                                                  • Older consumers have a stricter sense of local
                                                                                      • Figure 14: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category, by age, November 2013
                                                                                      • Figure 15: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by age, November 2013
                                                                                      • Figure 16: Budweiser, “Where Your Beer is Brewed,” TV Ad, 2014
                                                                                    • Lower income earners have a looser view of local
                                                                                        • Figure 17: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                        • Figure 18: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                    • Local Food and Drink Purchase Frequency

                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                        • Majority of consumers purchase local once or a couple times per month
                                                                                          • Fruit and vegetables are most frequently purchased local foods
                                                                                            • Popularity of local baked goods represents identification of category beyond home grown
                                                                                              • Figure 19: Local food and drink purchase frequency, November 2013
                                                                                            • Local positioning appears a strong means of attracting shoppers 65+
                                                                                              • Local alcohol appeals to younger segment
                                                                                                • Figure 20: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by age, November 2013
                                                                                              • Household income does not appear as a barrier of entry for local purchase
                                                                                                • Figure 21: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                              • Parents slightly more likely to shop local
                                                                                                • Figure 22: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                              • Hispanic consumers are a strong target for local products
                                                                                                • Figure 23: local food and drink purchase frequency, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2013
                                                                                                • Figure 24: Grocery shopping expenditures, by race/Hispanic origin, April 2011-June 2012
                                                                                            • Reasons for Buying Local

                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                • Freshness and community support lead reasons for buying local
                                                                                                    • Figure 25: Philadelphia, “Setting the Standard,” TV Ad, 2014
                                                                                                  • Only one third of local shoppers do so for financial value
                                                                                                    • Oldest consumers most interested in community, young shoppers interested in safety/environment
                                                                                                        • Figure 26: Reasons for buying local food and drink, by age, November 2013
                                                                                                      • Locally produced doesn’t lead purchase decisions, attributes do
                                                                                                          • Figure 27: Factors that influence food and drink purchase decisions, by age, November 2013
                                                                                                        • Lower income households who shop local most likely to say it’s a good value
                                                                                                          • Figure 28: Reasons for buying local food and drink, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                        • A third of those who prioritize local think it’s good for the environment
                                                                                                          • Figure 29: Reasons for buying local food and drink, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                        • White shoppers interested in community benefit, Asians look out for the environment/safety
                                                                                                          • Figure 30: Reasons for buying local food and drink, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2013
                                                                                                          • Figure 31: Organic foods, by race/Hispanic origin, May 2012-June 2013
                                                                                                      • Local Food and Drink Purchase Behavior

                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                          • Convenience doesn’t appear as a limitation, but will help market grow
                                                                                                            • Older consumers may need a helping hand, younger consumers may need a reality check
                                                                                                              • Figure 32: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (access), by age, November 2013
                                                                                                            • Seasons have greatest impact on regional shoppers
                                                                                                              • Figure 33: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (access), by region, November 2013
                                                                                                            • Even those who prioritize local are willing to buy from a grocery store
                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (access), by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                            • Half of consumers say local food costs more than non-local
                                                                                                              • Figure 35: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink pricing, by age, November 2013
                                                                                                              • Figure 36: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (spend), by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                            • Younger consumers more likely than 45+ to pay more for local
                                                                                                              • Figure 37: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (spend), by age, November 2013
                                                                                                            • Only slightly more than one third of consumers who prioritize local are willing to spend more for it
                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (spend), by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                          • Encouraging Local Purchase

                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                              • Lowering prices offers most significant opportunity for participation boost
                                                                                                                • Sellers should highlight the cost savings of buying local
                                                                                                                  • Figure 39: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by gender, November 2013
                                                                                                                • Community benefit sways 55+, online purchase appeals to 18-24s
                                                                                                                  • Consistent availability another strong draw
                                                                                                                    • 18-24s want to buy local online
                                                                                                                      • Figure 40: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by age, November 2013
                                                                                                                  • Attitudes Toward Local Food and Drink

                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                      • Eight in 10 consumers want to know when products were produced
                                                                                                                        • Young shoppers most skeptical about local food oversight
                                                                                                                          • Figure 41: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by age, November 2013
                                                                                                                        • Next to packaging, store signage is important form of communication
                                                                                                                          • Older consumers rely on packaging, store signage. Younger depend on media, word of mouth
                                                                                                                              • Figure 42: Identifying local food and drink, by age, November 2013
                                                                                                                            • Word of mouth and online resources important among parents
                                                                                                                              • Figure 43: Identifying local food and drink, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                            • Kids becoming more interested in going green
                                                                                                                              • Figure 44: Green products, April 2007-June 2013
                                                                                                                          • Appendix – Food and Drink Market Drivers

                                                                                                                            • Health and lifestyle
                                                                                                                              • Figure 45: American adults by weight category as determined by body mass index (BMI), 2008-Oct. 28, 2013
                                                                                                                            • Childhood and teen obesity – highest in decades
                                                                                                                                • Figure 46: Prevalence of obesity among children and adolescents aged 2-19, 1971-2010
                                                                                                                              • Consumer confidence
                                                                                                                                • Figure 47: University of Michigan’s index of consumer sentiment (ICS), 2007-13
                                                                                                                              • Unemployment
                                                                                                                                • Figure 48: US unemployment rate, by month, 2002-13
                                                                                                                                • Figure 49: US unemployment and underemployment rates, 2007-13
                                                                                                                                • Figure 50: Number of employed civilians in US, 2007-13
                                                                                                                              • Retail channels
                                                                                                                                • Figure 51: Distribution of expenditures on food for off-premise consumption, by channel, 2008-12
                                                                                                                              • Racial, ethnic population growth
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 52: US population by race and Hispanic origin, 2009, 2014, and 2019
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 53: Households with children, by race and Hispanic origin of householder, 2013
                                                                                                                                • Shifting US demographics
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 54: US population, by age, 2009-19
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 55: US households, by presence of own children, 2003-13
                                                                                                                              • Appendix – Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                                                • Factors influencing food/drink purchase
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 56: Factors that influence food and drink purchase decisions, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 57: Factors that influence food and drink purchase decisions, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 58: Factors that influence food and drink purchase decisions, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 59: Factors that influence food and drink purchase decisions, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Consumer definitions of local food and drink
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 60: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 61: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category, by region, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 62: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 63: Attitudes toward local food and drink, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 64: Consumer definitions of local by food and drink category-Nets, by local food and drink purchase frequency – Nets, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Reasons for buying local food and drink
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 65: Reasons for buying local food and drink, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 66: Reasons for buying local food and drink, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Local food and drink purchase frequency
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 67: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 68: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by region, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 69: Local food and drink purchase frequency, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Local food and drink purchase behavior
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 70: Local food and drink purchasing behavior, by gender, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 71: Local food and drink purchasing behavior, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 72: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (access), by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 73: Local food and drink purchasing behavior, by household size, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 74: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (access), by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 75: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (spend), by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 76: Local food and drink purchasing behavior (spend), by region, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 77: Local food and drink purchase frequency-row nets, by local food and drink purchasing behavior, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Factors that may encourage increased local food purchase
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 78: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 79: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 80: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 81: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 82: Factors that may encourage increased local food purchases, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Attitudes toward local food and drink
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 83: Attitudes toward local food and drink, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 84: Identifying local food and drink, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 85: Attitudes toward local food and drink pricing, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 86: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by gender and age, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 87: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 88: Identifying local food and drink, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 89: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink pricing, by household income, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 90: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 91: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink pricing, by presence of children in household, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 92: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by race/Hispanic origin, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 93: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 94: Identifying local food and drink, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 95: Agreement with attitudes toward local food and drink pricing, by whether or not local is a priority, November 2013
                                                                                                                                • Attitudes/opinions about shopping
                                                                                                                                  • Figure 96: Attitudes/opinions about shopping, April 2007-June 2013

                                                                                                                              Companies Covered

                                                                                                                              To learn more about the companies covered in this report please contact us.

                                                                                                                              The Locavore: Attitudes toward Locally-Sourced Foods - US - February 2014

                                                                                                                              £3,174.67 (Excl.Tax)