Dutch consumers are buying more sustainable food than before


The sales of food produced in an environmentally and animal friendly way rose by over 10% in 2013 compared to the year before. Total spending in the Netherlands was 2.5 billion euro. These findings were published in the ‘Monitor Sustainable Food 2013’ on June 4, 2014. This report is produced annually by Wageningen University for the Ministry of Economic Affairs.


The Minister of Agriculture, Sharon Dijksma (Ministry of Economic Affairs) recognizes a positive trend. “The job is not done yet, but the efforts to inform consumers about sustainable food production are paying off. People are making more conscious choices when shopping.  Because of this, sustainable food is the biggest growth segment in the food market.” Dutch spending on food without a certification label dropped (1.1%).

Especially seafood and eggs

In particular, the sales of sustainable seafood and eggs are growing. By now one out of three eggs or seafood products has a certification label on pack. There is also a bigger demand for organic bread. Whereas sales of meat were lower, consumers spend more money on sustainable meat. Retailers are seeing a growth in the turnover of sustainable food, with 68% of all sustainable food sold by retailers, especially meat.

Consumers choosing MSC and ASC certified seafood

The ‘Monitor Sustainable Food 2013’ shows that the sales of sustainable seafood grew significantly in 2013 (+ 21%). One out of three seafood products in Dutch retail carries the MSC label for sustainably caught seafood or the ASC logo for responsibly farmed seafood.

Esther Luiten, ASC European Manager Commercial Marketing, said: “It is encouraging to see that the preference of Dutch consumers for certified seafood is continuously growing.  The ASC logo for responsibly farmed seafood is relatively new in the Dutch market, but the growth that is reported in ‘Monitor Sustainable Food 2013’ is a tremendous reward for producers that meet the stringent social and environmental requirements of the ASC standards. Together we can make responsible aquaculture a reality.  Only recently ASC certified salmon became available in the Netherlands and we expect ASC certified farmed shrimp to be available in late 2014.  We trust that Dutch consumers will continue to show their preference for responsibly farmed seafood in 2014 as well!”

Hans Nieuwenhuis, MSC Country Manager Benelux, said: “Again we saw an 11% growth of MSC in the Dutch market in 2013. We are proud of this. When consumers choose a product with the MSC logo they recognize and reward investments by fishermen and other companies in sustainable fisheries. By asking for MSC certified seafood, consumers are increasing meaningful improvements in the sea. The MSC’s vision is of the world’s oceans teeming with life and seafood supplies safeguarded for this and future generations.”


Source: ANP

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