Kristin DiMarco was heading into a Trader Joe's in West Los Angeles the other day and knew for sure what she wouldn't be buying: anything organic.
"I just feel like I've already built up an immunity to anything that might be in my food," the 26-year-old told me.
Besides, she said, why would she want to pay a mark-up that can run double or triple the cost of conventional food?
"I don't think there's a big-enough difference in quality to justify those prices," DiMarco said. She's not alone. The market research firm Mintel released a study last week showing that younger consumers — the fickle Gen X and millennial crowds — are decidedly cynical about the high prices charged for organic goods.
Only about 40% of Gen Xers believe that organic is organic, Mintel found. And about half of all consumers think labelling something organic is just an excuse to charge more.
"Consumers are increasingly hard-pressed to justify the added expense," said Billy Roberts, Mintel's senior food and drink analyst. "As such, sales have hit something of a plateau, where they likely will remain until consumers have a clear reason to turn to organics."