Organic prices continue to drop as consumer demand increases
They say you put your money where your mouth is, and that seems to be working for those of us trying to use dollars to convince more companies to go organic. The AP recently reported that though U.S. shoppers still pay more for organic food, organic prices are continuing to fall as more and more options come out.

According to an AP/ Nielsen report, organic food and drinks cost $.24 more on average per unit when compared to conventional foods, or about 7.5% more last year, but that is down from $.27 / 9% premium in 2014.

Which is not to say that organic food does not still cost considerably more than conventional foods. An average price for a gallon of organic milk is $4.76 while a conventional gallon costs shoppers $2.53 on average. An organic loaf of bread averages about $4.89 a loaf, which is twice the cost of a regular loaf of bread.

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That said, parents who buy organic baby foods pay on average just about 3% more per unit than they do for conventional baby food, showing that there is hope that the cost differences between organic and conventional foods can still come closer. It seems organic prices are changing.

Part of the reason for the variation is that certain foods like milk and eggs have very specific government regulation when it comes to what designates them as organic. The rules are made for the benefit of the animal, the environment and the customer, but increase the price of production for the milk because of the regulation expense.

A big factor in the decrease of pricing though is the options consumers are now offered. Today more than ever, organic products that one used to only find in high-end grocery stores like Whole Foods now are in many mainstream grocery stores with other conventional products. For example, Kroger is one of the nation's largest grocery store chains and says it stocks 9,000 organic items in its stores, with $1 billion in organic produce sales in 2017 alone.

Additionally, the report claims that consumer demand is driving prices, as the demand for organics is greater than many other categories in the U.S.; categories that include food, beverages and toiletries and had flat sales last year, but organics' sales rose 9%.

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This is largely due to Millennial households that buy organic milks and baby food for their children, but they're not the only generation consuming more and more organic products. Sarah Schmansky is a vice predient of growth and strategy at Nielsen and says that consumers are looking at products that have benefit, and find that in organics.

As well, consumers tend to trust organic companies ore, and turn to them more in light of outbreaks of E. coli and listeria.

So where you put your money really does make a difference! Every penny spent on organic tells manufacturers that there is demand, and they'll work more to meet it--which means we all win with prices that continue to drop.

Photo: Lisovskaya Natalia/Shutterstock