To properly market organic produce, many supermarkets have used the strategy of creating a store-within-a-store – by completely separating organic from the regular produce.
“It makes it more of a destination for the organic customer who’s looking for those items.” Tad Comeau, produce director for Festival Foods told Supermarket News. The strategy makes it easier for organic customers to find what they are looking for, while reducing the likelihood that non-organic customers will find it by accident and balk at the higher prices.
When all is said and done, the organic section of the average supermarket is often quite restricted – frequently comprising no more than a single aisle. Smaller stores selling nothing but organic produce may be able to wow customers with the selection and range of foods they carry – but they don’t generally get the same kind of traffic as the supermarkets. This creates a very competitive environment for everyone in the ever-growing natural foods sector. Major supermarkets with a huge organic selection have a definite short term advantage in the marketplace, but as consumer preferences swing and organic becomes more and more popular, there will be room for everyone in a thriving marketplace.