Different sales channels for different farmers: Local and mainstream marketing of organic fruits and vegetables in Norway

Milford, Anna, Gudbrand, Lien and Reed, Matt ORCID: 0000-0003-1105-9625 (2021) Different sales channels for different farmers: Local and mainstream marketing of organic fruits and vegetables in Norway. Journal of Rural Studies, 88. pp. 279-288. doi:10.1016/j.jrurstud.2021.08.018

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Most food in developed countries, including organic fruits and vegetables, is sold through supply chains run by large wholesalers and supermarket chains. A certain share is sold through local marketing channels such as speciality stores, food box schemes, farmers’ markets, and community-supported agriculture (CSA). This study uses qualitative interviews and a quantitative survey to expose the differences between mainstream and local marketing of organic fruits and vegetables in Norway, why and to what extent farmers selling through these two sales channels are different. We find that the supermarket chains’ requirements to provide large quantities of uniform product are burdensome for smaller farmers to match. Farmers supplying the mainstream supermarkets tend to be larger and more rurally located. Farmers selling through local marketing are likely to be smaller, closer to urban areas and more diversified in their production. For local marketing farmers, it is more feasible to produce according to organic principles, using local resources and crop rotation. Survey results also show that local marketing farmers are less motivated to produce fruits and vegetables by income and more motivated to produce organically to achieve better quality and sustainability. At the same time, there are also many similarities between the two groups, and we do not find evidence of a general “conventionalisation” of organic agriculture in Norway.

Item Type: Article
Article Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Marketing; Local food; Organic fruits and vegetables; Norway
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General)
S Agriculture > S Agriculture (General) > S589.75 Agriculture and the environment
Divisions: Schools and Research Institutes > Countryside and Community Research Institute
Research Priority Areas: Place, Environment and Community
Depositing User: Matthew Reed
Date Deposited: 20 Aug 2021 15:46
Last Modified: 18 Aug 2023 04:15
URI: https://eprints.glos.ac.uk/id/eprint/10075

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