Foot-and-mouth sparks organics surge.

Foot-and-mouth sparks organics surge

May 25, 2001 Retail Week
The impact of foot-and-mouth is among factors contributing to a surge in organic food sales.

Specialist retailers say sales have boomed since the crisis began, giving extra impetus to a market that is expected to double in value to more than GBP 1 billion within two years.

Internet and mail order specialist SimplyOrganic and five-store chain Fresh & Wild both claimed foot-and-mouth has resulted in a boom in sales.

SimplyOrganic's sales have increased by over 50 per cent in the last two months. Managing director Ian Smith said: "Consumers are very worried about food in the light of recent scares."

Fresh & Wild chief executive Bryan Meehan said: "A growing number of people don't trust the conventional food chain." Fresh & Wild's sales last month rose 108 per cent year-on-year and like-for-like sales increased by 33 per cent.

According to the IGD, organics is becoming a mainstream category, with the market expected to account for around 1 per cent of the entire grocery market within two years.

Big grocers are increasing their organics ranges. Sainsbury's, for instance, plans to expand its 1,000-strong range.

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