Local and artisan food: A case for supermarket space?
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The aim of this research study is to explore how the Irish consumer relates to local and artisan food products, and, in particular, to investigate whether Irish consumers would consider the supermarket environment as a suitable location and space for the purchase of local and artisan food items. Relevant secondary literature was examined, a gap was identified, and this was followed by a quantitative primary research approach. The empirical findings were collected from a comprehensive online survey which resulted in a remarkable 14,646 respondents. This rich data enabled the researchers to thoroughly examine the characteristics and behaviour displayed by Irish food retail consumers when deliberating various elements relating to local and artisan food products. A noteworthy finding from the current study is that 98.8% of respondents would like to be able to purchase local food products in a supermarket. This research also reveals that 76% of respondents expect to pay either less than, or the same price, for local food products, as they do for similar standard food products in supermarkets. Interestingly, 66.5% of respondents are either ‘very likely’ or ‘likely’ to increase their food ‘spend’ on local and artisan food products in the next twelve months. This research will be of direct benefit to parties involved with, and connected to, the grocery retail sector in Ireland. This includes multinationals, Irish owned stores, and independent grocery retailers. Local and artisan food producers will also benefit from these findings, and especially organisations such as Enterprise Ireland and Bord Bía who aim to support Irish businesses and grow the success of the Irish food story.
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