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The French and organic products: a new landscape of consumption and lifestyle is emerging


The market for organic products has been growing steadily for the past ten years. But who are the buyers of organic food and cosmetic products? Why did they switch to organic? Why are they staying there? Organics Cluster Rhône-Alpes and Cosmebio have joined forces to answer these questions by designing a consumer study entitled “Consumer profile and purchasing practices for organic cosmetics and food in 2016 (1)”, carried out by OpinionWay / Senseva. This study delivers relevant messages and announces a new landscape of consumption and behavior of the French.

Health-conscious consumers

The results of the study highlighted the fact that buyers of organic products are more than 80% attentive to their physical and psychological health. More than half of them (50%) engage in physical activity on a regular basis, and most of them participate in an outdoor activity or sport on a weekly basis. They have a marked interest in cooking, the search for quality food products (+ 60%) but also in well-being activities, a more significant phenomenon among consumers of organic cosmetics (+ 50%).

Focus on the 1st organic experience

The main purchasing trigger is awareness for + 50% of buyers: ecological impact, health problems, health scandals. Most often, the key to entering organic remains food, mostly purchased in supermarkets (nearly 60%). The consumer will then switch to processed products and / or organic cosmetics. The majority of organic consumers are recent given the innovation and communication efforts on the part of organic companies (58% of less than 5 years in food and 70% of purchases in cosmetics less 5 years).

Going organic means changing your lifestyle

Switching to organic means a change in life for 85% of buyers: 71% pay more attention to their mode of consumption (food waste, consuming less but better, waste management, carpooling, etc.). 65% pay more attention to their health: they take care of their body, take detox cures, start or intensify their physical activity.

The 4 main reasons for switching to organic:
* reassure yourself (preserve your health, consume healthy products, preserve your skin) 41%
* values (preserving nature, the planet, respect for producers) 26%
* pleasure (well-being and that of his family) 21%
* out of fear (pesticides, chemicals) 15%

This switch to organic is done in a sustainable way for all consumers. The terms most used when asking open questions about buying organic products are pride, relief, interest and pleasure. The consumption of organic products appears mainly as a “serious” act, nourished by the need for safety, meaning and consistency. This consumption remains essentially based on the confidence granted to the sector and imposes a high level of requirement.

The study made it possible to define different types of buyers in organic food and cosmetics.

Specificities and profile of organic cosmetics buyers

Buyers of organic cosmetics more engaged than average

First observation: 85% of buyers of organic cosmetics have also bought an organic food product in the past 12 months. We also note that awareness of the ecological impact, health scandals and health problems are much more important triggers among buyers of organic cosmetics. Consumption of organic products is reported to be higher among buyers of organic cosmetics (74%).
To reassure themselves, these consumers are attached to the visibility of a label and respect for the skin.
The purchase of organic cosmetics is done in supermarkets, pharmacies and parapharmacies and organic stores on an equal basis. The first products are: face care (20%), hair products (20%) and body care (16%).

The 5 profiles of organic cosmetics buyers

Engaged ambassadors (33%)

This group whose average age is the same as that of the French. They have strong values (environment, nature, etc.) associated with strong purchasing potential. The presence of a Bio label is important. They are more prescribers than average and are more interested in the virtues of nature.

Beauty junkies (25%)

This is a young group with a very high proportion of women who go out at night, who like to go to relaxation / well-being spaces. Few consumers of organic products, this group favors price, the main lever for purchasing

Seniors concerned about their health (21%)

This group is made up of a large part of 65 years and over, not very active on social networks. They are mainly looking for products that respect the skin but an organic label does not matter to them.

Animal advocates (12%)

Ensuring cosmetic products are cruelty-free is an important purchasing criterion. Consuming organic cosmetic products allows them to be in harmony with their values.

Organic hipsters (8%)

Composed of 51% men, this group is very active on social networks. He focuses on his physical appearance, diet and well-being. Consuming organic cosmetics is synonymous for them with dreams and travel.

* (1) Organics Cluster / COSMEBIO consumer study carried out by Senseva / OpinionWay from February 2 to 14, 2016 - according to the CAWI method - from a sample of 1076 buyers of organic products from March 2015 to March 2016, representative of the elderly French population 18 years and over.


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