Research Article: 2022 Vol: 26 Issue: 6S
Nicolás Ortiz – Esaine, Universidad de Lima
Responsible Brands, Sustainable Consumption, Organics, Entrepreneurship, Healthy Life
Ortiz – Esaine, N. (2022). Sustainable market vision for organic rural entrepreneurship. International Journal of Entrepreneurship, 26(S6), 1-6.
Markets and rural producers are getting in common sustainable vision. The consumption of agro-ecological products has generated an increase in stores with multiple options both in food and in initiatives by organizations and stores to support this consumption. This is based on the meeting of an attitude towards responsible consumption and a preference for products made in a sustainable way. A qualitative approach will be used consisting of interviews with Specialists, Producers and Consumers. The trends, habits and value proposition of these products and their impact on the environment are described. It concludes in the formation of a food culture towards the demand for sustainability in the preferred foods, of certain categories and in a certain sector of the middle-class population.
The sustainable consumer seeks to make positive decisions regarding consumption and at the same time these are a solution to the negative impact of global consumerism. It is a respectful and compassionate approach that generates empathy and respect for other human beings, animals and the environment. Among these consumers, different trends such as veganism stand out, as well as other more flexible ones such as vegetarianism, flexitarianism or simply a healthy lifestyle. However, they all have in common the search for conscious consumption in all areas of life. More and more people choose to change their consumption and more and more companies know and regulate their own policies. The what, how and how much to consume is the topic that little by little becomes a trend, and influences more people from different countries to make the decision to carry out sustainable consumption.
Ecological products are, in general terms, those that protect the environment and promote the responsible exploitation of natural resources. Different connotations can be drawn depending on what exactly is an eco-friendly product. Ecological products are those commercialized by companies that have a positive impact on the environment. On the other hand, they are not harmful to the environment. It is a term that refers to products that contribute to green life or practices that help conserve natural resources, such as: water and energy. Agro-ecological products promote green living, help conserve energy, and also prevent air, water, and noise pollution. They have proven to be of great help to the environment; and also prevent the deterioration of human health. Organization is another feature that promotes sustainable style.
Human beings leave their mark on the world, both in technological advances, as well as in culture and the environment. This in many occasions is something positive; however, not so good things of this importance cannot be excluded, such as the waste that humans leave in the world. These can be classified into four sectors: food footprint, waste as such, energy footprint and our transport footprint. Foods of plant origin are those that contribute the least to the environmental footprint, as well as their derivatives, such as beverages and nut butters, tofu, soybeans, legumes, among others. The foods that use more environmental and human energy and involve resources such as water for their production are meats, dairy products, sausages and derivatives. However, human beings need various nutrients to have a healthy, nutritious and balanced diet, taking into account a broader approach that also values environmental impact and sustainability, which is ideal for the future of humanity.
Sustainable consumption tries to “do more and better with less”. It seeks, in a generalized way, to separate the idea that economic growth should generate environmental degradation, manage resources more efficiently and promote this as a way of life.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has defined sustainable diets as diets with low environmental impact, which contribute to food and nutritional security and healthy lives for present and future generations (Roig, 2020).
Consumption planning is very important to avoid buying more or making more efficient purchases. Organic consumption goes hand in hand with the aforementioned organic products, which can be plants, animals or their derivatives; they are produced and made with natural substances. No chemical synthesis pesticides or fertilizers are used in their production and they are also free of hormones, antibiotics, heavy metal residues, without the use of artificial colors and flavors, as well as Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) (Zambrano, Trujillo & Solórzano, 2015).
The environmental consequences of food systems have begun to mark their place on public health agendas (Serra-Majem & Ortiz-Andrellucchi, 2018). In addition to this, it has been shown that although many make a radical change in their diet, the effect on the environment would be minimal. Real change will require not only substantial changes in consumer food choices, but also major changes in agri-food industry practices, catering services, and agricultural and trade policies (Serra-Majem & Ortiz-Andrellucchi, 2018). This is how we can differentiate sustainability in two major conceptual areas: 1. Sustainability of community nutrition programs, understood as autonomy and self-financing or not external [personal] dependence. 2. Sustainability of agricultural, livestock and nutritional policies with the environment [industry] (Serra-Majem & Ortiz-Andrellucchi, 2018).
Current times force society to seek sustainability, so it is important to highlight current trends such as ethical consumption, defined by Beck & Ladwig (2020) as changes in purchase and consumption options as a morally informed response to errors in the production and distribution of goods and services; These trends, which in turn are lifestyles, are reflected in issues such as veganism, which is according to Greenebaum (2012), a statement of identity, beyond a diet it is a philosophy and a lifestyle.
A diet that does not harm biodiversity or local ecosystems, cultures or customs, that is profitable and uses natural resources in the best way, and that allows an adequate and healthy diet (Ortiz, 2016). Many countries have already put it to the test, from an industry perspective, in recent times the focus has been on the production of food with the least possible environmental impact. However, currently the emphasis is on modifying eating habits (Roig, 2020).
With consumers increasingly concerned about the origin of products, the meaning of responsible business is changing and forcing companies to improve their minimum standards regarding respect for animals, even common products (Angus & Westbrook, 2019). This is how consumers, worldwide, show greater awareness of sustainable consumption trends and is more willing to increase their consumption.
The most important factors that motivate the purchase of organic products, which are part of sustainable consumption, are food safety and the contribution to health they provide. (Higuchi, 2015) They also identified nine agents that stimulate the purchase of organic products: Concern for health and nutrition, superior taste, care for the environment, food safety, interest in animal welfare, and support from locals. Economy, health, nostalgia and curiosity or fashion.
The economy can be reactivated without buying too much that is why we speak of sustainable consumption and not simply reduction of consumption. This can be achieved under a circular economy (Xicota, 2019).
A qualitative exploratory study was carried out to identify trends and behaviors around responsible consumption and sustainable food. The objectives of this study:
a) Know the scope of responsible consumption in practice,
b) Analyze the value offer of sustainable food,
c) Determine consumption trends.
This study is based on (15) interviews with specialists, producers and consumers of organic food, who lead a sustainable life either due to the need to change their diet for health reasons or because they want to help the environment, from Perú.
a) Specialists: directors and executives of Indecopi (consumer protection office), Fundes (NGO to support economic development), Terra Nuova (NGO for the development of sustainability), Eco Agriculture Consultants (Resurgiendo project - European Union) and ANPE (National Association of Organic Producers).
b) Producers: Coffee, Capsicum, Pisco, Chocolate, Milk Cooperatives.
c) Consumers: young adults, men and women, with frequent consumption of organic products, middle class.
It was carried out with the support of the University of Lima and the students of the "Consumer Anthropology" course: Marina Valeria Torres Montenegro, Sebastián Camino Caro, Fernanda Fernández, Milagros Valdivia Medina, Ariana Torrejón Tarrillo.
We group and collate the results from the 3 points of view: Specialists, Producers and Consumers. These respond to the 3 research objectives: a) Responsible Consumption, b) Sustainable Food, c) Healthy Living.
On this point, they indicate that the new generations are aware of it. Therefore, they seek to replace small actions to contribute to the environment, such as using metal straws or bamboo toothbrushes, replacing plastic bags with cloth bags, stop buying fast fashion clothes, among other actions that make a difference and in time they will cause a great change. They propose to prevent the environment from being contaminated with various types of chemicals and preservatives.
|It can be promoted through caring for the environment, raising awareness when it comes to wasting food.||Many fruits and vegetables want us in supermarkets because they are not "shiny and worthy of being on a shelf."||The Imperfectus brand sells rescued products: “they sell you a box of fruits and vegetables 'from the field to your house' that are not in perfect condition.|
|Support the ecosystem, consume organic, among other actions that are part of leading a sustainable lifestyle.||The contribution that the consumption of organic products makes to the environment. There is awareness in consuming less processed products.||You should consume foods as less processed as possible and limit the consumption of meat, since we would be helping to reduce animal consumption.|
They point out that organic products in Peru have a promising future because the new generations are better informed and have more social awareness, this will lead to adding more and more ecological and sustainable agricultural products to their basic family baskets. They believe that it would be ideal both for our health and for the care of the environment, for people to have a sustainable diet and use organic products. However, they do not deny that it can be complicated for many people. Consuming organic products allows you to take care of the body and contribute to the environment.
They propose to create strategies so that the majority of the population has this change in diet.
|Organic products as such are a "marketing lie" as it would be more of a utopia to make everyone sustainable and everything highly organic, NOGMO and pesticide free.||It is super relative and it does benefit the environment but it is unsustainable.||It is super relative and it does benefit the environment but it is unsustainable.|
|We must promote plant-based eating, as more fruits and vegetables would be produced. Develop sustainable diets considering economic circumstances to have more scope to other sectors and not focus on a single sector.||By not ingesting processed foods, the environment is prevented from being contaminated by chemicals or preservatives. And, in turn, these elements will not enter the body, allowing a healthier life.||An organic apple can cost 2 times more than a normal apple and in the end you will not die from eating an ordinary apple.|
There could not be a complete change in this aspect, especially in Peru, where we are used to eating traditional dishes. They are aware of the positive changes that leading a healthy lifestyle can generate, in which health and environmental benefits are prioritized.
They went to a nutritionist, he gave them a healthy diet, which accompanied with sports would help achieve their goals, both physical and health. By observing the good results, he was able to understand the importance of leading a healthy life and consuming organic food that will not harm his health in the future.
They point out the importance of promoting a healthy lifestyle and the benefits it has both for health and the environment.
|We have an organic community or that try to be, because not everyone is convinced that they want to change their diets.||It allows you to obtain a wide variety of health benefits.||Play sports and be accompanied by a good diet.|
|By having a diet as natural as possible, it ensured the prevention of different diseases.||It would be a benefit for the future, since by adopting this diet we would stop consuming foods with chemicals, which affects health and at the same time we would be supporting small farmers who have been overshadowed by large companies.||They began to lead this lifestyle when doing sports, since it was very important to maintain good physical condition. When starting with these new habits in their day to day, they noticed a great improvement in their body, which benefits their health and above all allowed them to perform better in sports championships.|
Understanding culture is essential to implement, understand social changes and implement strategies (Ortiz, 2021). A culture of healthy life is being formed in middle-class consumers that begin with the preference for food produced in a sustainable way. This assumes previous consumption patterns such as: healthy lifestyle, organic consumption and social responsibility.
Illustration 1: Sustainable Consumption Culture
People who try to implement a sustainable lifestyle are characterized by being aware of the waste they generate, to know how much impact their actions can have on the environment and to know what to do to change it. By being aware of their impact, they know what actions and things to avoid because they have no power to be recycled, reused and could become garbage. They buy what is necessary, current consumerism is aimed at an economic reactivation, thanks to the effects that the covid-19 pandemic has generated in our country, however, this should not mean that you should buy to buy. In silence, people who have adopted a sustainable lifestyle know that a garment can be used several times and that a cloth bag can be more useful than a plastic bag that lasts only once.
Sustainable food not only favors people's health, but also improves the quality of the environment, it could be said that sustainable food is the key to combat different social, cultural and nutritional problems. We could have a lifestyle change in most people in the future, especially in the new generations; this is because millennials and generation Z are more aware of the effects it causes on our health and the environment, that's why they seek to replace the day. -Day-to-day habits with others that contribute to this cause.
This lifestyle based on sustainable food is being implemented more and more. It is common to find people who carry out this lifestyle that not only proposes health care and nutrition but also has a background that implies empathy towards the environment and preserves the planet as much as possible throughout the world, weather. This trend is occurring worldwide, however, due to an issue of education and medium-high socioeconomic level, it is where the issue is most developed, since we find bio ferries, a greater number of organic stores and healthy products and municipal policies that implement, measures that go hand in hand with sustainable consumerism such as recycling. For these reasons, a large part of its inhabitants are consumers of organic food and are more aware of leading this lifestyle.
It was confirmed that the main reason for the demand for these foods is the large consumption generated by people who apply this lifestyle as fashion, trend or simply because they find the benefits they expect in their day to day with respect to the environment and theirs health.
It is also noteworthy that with the passage of time, more people will begin to consume organic food and all that this lifestyle entails, since, at present; there have been great positive changes in the environment, which motivates many more people.
We can also rescue the decrease in animal consumption and industrial and processed foods that this sustainable diet has generated, which not only leads to good health but also to the reduction of the consumption of valuable natural resources such as water and energy. In addition, as consumers it is necessary to support local farmers, as they provide natural, non-transgenic food and allow a circular economy to take place.
Organic and eco-friendly products are better received than those made up of the middle / upper economic classes, since the consumption of these products in Lima is still considered a privilege, that is why many of these brands prefer to be located in this area. A slight change in eating habits could be achieved in the popular sectors, but not to the point of substituting products for others that would triple their prices.
The information from social networks has a lot of influence on people, since it is where many of them spend most of their time; this type of content allows them to stay informed about the benefits and results of leading a healthy lifestyle, both in oneself as in the environment. Even the main factor that motivated her to decide to change her habits was the influence of viewing this type of content through social networks. Now, more people are applying sustainable food and the consumption of organic products, since the campaigns have made people realize that it is something very important and that it would greatly benefit the care of the environment and themselves.
Angus, A., & Westbrook, G. (2019). Top 10 Global Consumer Trends for 2019. Euromonitor International.
Greenebaum, J. (2012). Veganism, identity and the quest for authenticity. New Britain: Central Connecticut State University.
Higuchi, A. (2015). Characteristics of consumers of organic products and expansion of their offer in Lima. Notes, 42(77), 57-89.
United Nations. (s.f.). Goal 12: Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns.
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Xicota, E. (2019). Sustainable production and responsible consumption. [Conference session]. University of Lima, Lima, Peru.
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Received: 23-Apr-2022, Manuscript No. IJE-22-10714; Editor assigned: 26-Apr-2022, PreQC No. IJE-22-10714 (PQ); Reviewed: 10-May-2022, QC No. IJE-22-10714; Revised: 17-May-2022, Manuscript No. IJE-22-10714 (R); Published: 23-May-2022