|Home > Consumers' attitudes toward ethical food: Evidence from social farming in Italy|
Agriculture seems to be capable to foster rehabilitation, work integration and social inclusion of vulnerable people: persons with mental disabilities, people with burn out, long-term unemployed, individuals with an addiction history, and so on. "Social farms", i.e. farms that provide these kind of services, are present in several European countries and their number is growing. The emerging interest of an increasing number of consumers for the "ethical quality" of products suggests that the social functions of these farms could be remunerated, although partially, by the market. The paper discusses the issues mentioned above and focuses on some empirical evidence on consumers' beliefs and attitude about social farms' products. Data are collected through a survey based on interviews that focus on: the degree of knowledge and the general interest on the subject; the willingness to buy social farms' products and the conditions under which their purchase could be taken into consideration. More in details, the presence of significant differences in consumers' attitude and behavior are tested, and factors that affect such different demand segments are explored.