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Consumer Behavior and Knowledge on Organic Products in Thailand

Authors: Warunpun Kongsom, Chaiwat Kongsom


The objective of this study was to investigate the awareness, knowledge and consumer behavior towards organic products in Thailand. For this study, a purposive sampling technique was used to identify a sample group of 2,575 consumers over the age of 20 years who intended or made purchases from 1) green shops; 2) supermarkets with branches; and, 3) green markets. A questionnaire was used for data collection across the country. Descriptive statistics were used for data analysis. The results showed that more than 92% of consumers were aware of organic agriculture, but had less knowledge about it. More than 60% of consumers knew that organic agriculture production and processing did not allow the use of chemicals. And about 40% of consumers were confused between the food safety logo and the certified organic logo, and whether GMO was allowed in organic agriculture practice or not. In addition, most consumers perceived that organic agricultural products, good agricultural practice (GAP) products, agricultural chemicals free products, and hydroponic vegetable products had the same standard. In the view of organic consumers, the organic Thailand label was the most seen and reliable among various organic labels. Less than 3% of consumers thought that the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) Global Organic Mark (GOM) was the most seen and reliable. For the behaviors of organic consumers, they purchased organic products mainly at the supermarket and green shop (55.4%), one to two times per month, and with a total expenditure of about 200 to 400 baht each time. The main reason for buying organic products was safety and free from agricultural chemicals. The considered factors in organic product selection were price (29.5%), convenience (22.4%), and a reliable certification system (21.3%). The demands for organic products were mainly rice, vegetables and fruits. Processed organic products were relatively small in quantity.

Keywords: Consumer behavior, consumer knowledge, organic products, Thailand.

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