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Abstract

The profitability of farms in the northeastern U.S. is hampered by the high cost of production in the region. Production of high-value crops such as organic produce is one of the solutions to keep these farms viable in the region. However, production challenges and limited information related to marketing are likely to hamper the potential growth of organic agriculture in the northeastern U. S. A logit model was developed to predict who is more likely to buy certified organic produce using 1,100 respondents in the Mid-Atlantic region. About 87% of the consumers were willing to buy certified organic produce, and the remaining 13% were not. While 6% of respondents stated that they would not pay slightly more for organic produce, nearly 43 % of the respondents stated that they would pay more than 10 cents premium for a dollar’s worth of organic produce. The results indicate that those who have a graduate degree, those who are influenced by an eco-friendly label, country of origin label, or pesticide-free label are more likely to purchase certified organic produce. Producers and marketers of certified organic vegetables and fruits can target customers with these specific traits to enhance their sales and profitability

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