The CORE Organic research project, Farmer Consumer Partnership (FCP), has aimed at determining how the commitment of organic farmers to ethical values additional to the standards of organic farming can be communicated effectively to customers in order to strengthed the market positioning.
The overall objective has been to analyse and test innovative communication strategies and arguments that are related to the concept of "Corporate Social Responsibility", CSR in short.
Selected main outccomes of FCP
Promising marketing potential of organic food's ethical aspects
The communication of additional ethical attributes of organic food offers a promising potential for product differentiation in the organic market.
Organic farmers go beyond the organic regulation minimum requirements
Many producers practise organic farming in ways that go far beyond the minimum requirements of the EU regulation on organic farming. the producers in the FCP study have successfully incorporated a broad range of values and sustainable goals.
A convincing communication strategy is worthwhile developing
The communication of additional ethical attributes like "regional/local production", "animal welfare", and "fair prices for farmers", remains a major challenge. However, examples of successful communication of additional animal welfare standards identified in the FCP project show that developing convincing communication strategies is worthwhile.
"A noticeable share of consumers is willing to
pay higher prices for organic food which is
produced in accordance with higher ‘ethical’
standards – given that the specific qualities of
the food are properly communicated."
[Excerpt from the article introduction]
This booklet provides farmers and processors with practical advice and case studies on how to target their marketing strategies to the growing number of ‘ethical consumers’, and how to improve their communication with their customers.
Project publications in Organic Eprints
Browse the FCP publications in the online open-access research archive, Organic Eprints