Attitudes towards organic foods among Swedish consumers

Maria K. Magnusson, Anne Arvola, Ulla Kaisa Koivisto Hursti, Lars Åberg, Per Olow Sjödén

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

518 Citations (Scopus)


The present study reports demographic differences with respect to Swedish consumers’ attitudes towards organic foods (milk, meat, potatoes, bread), purchase frequency, purchase criteria, perceived availability, and beliefs about organic foods. A random nation-wide sample of 2,000 respondents, aged 18-65 years, were mailed a questionnaire and 1,154 (58 per cent) responded. The majority of consumers, and particularly women and young respondents (18-25 years) reported positive attitudes, but purchase frequency was low. A total of 13 per cent stated that they regularly bought organic milk. Corresponding figures for organic meat, potatoes, and bread were 13, 16, and 8 per cent respectively. The most important purchase criterion was good taste, and the least important was “organically produced”. Approximately half of the respondents were satisfied with the availability of the organic foods. The organic foods were perceived to be more expensive and healthier than conventionally produced alternatives. A major obstacle to the purchase of organic foods was reported to be premium prices. The results suggest that the consumption will not increase as long as important purchase criteria and perceived beliefs about organic foods do not match.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-227
JournalBritish Food Journal
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2001
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Attitude-behaviour discrepancy
  • Consumer attitudes
  • Organic foods


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