Trends in Sustainable Food: 28% honestly disengaged

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A few weeks ago, Defra released their latest research on attitudes to sustainable food (full report). They found that people want to buy healthy and local food.

The full report is very interesting and reveals some of the recent trends in attitudes to sustainable produce. I’ve picked out a couple of statistics.

61% strongly disagree or tend to disagree that it’s only worth doing environmentally friendly things if it saves you money

This is a promising statistic, luckily saving money and environmentally friendly often go hand in hand. Buying in season, locally produced food, where possible, is also likely to save you money, just make sure it’s LEAF Marque!

53% are happy with what they currently do for the environment

Just less than half of those surveyed feel they need to do more for the environment. Extrapolating (and possibly exaggerating) the data from the survey into the population of the UK, about 30 million people aren’t happy with what they do for the environment. How can we reach these people and get them eating and buying more sustainably? Based on the results of the survey, Defra segmented the participants by the Defra model:

Segmentation by the Defra model

Is the biggest challenge the sky blue segment above, the honestly disengaged? How can these people be reached out to and encouraged to become engaged? Is the problem a lack of understanding? We hope that Open Farm Sunday and LEAF’s network of Demonstration Farms can play a critical role in helping raise awareness of how farmers are producing our food sustainably.

How visitors rated their knowledge of farming in general

Or are the honestly disengaged cast off as un-engageable, with the rest of us to making up for them?

What do you think? Tweet us on @LEAF_Farming or comment below

About the Author

DSCF10602ResizeTom Hills is a member of the LEAF team. Look out for his consumer views posts on sustainable food and farming. You can contact Tom on with any queries, or if you have a burning desire to be published on LEAF’s blog!


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