CONSUMERS PERCEPTION OF LITHUANIAN ECO-LABEL
Keywords:eco-labels, eco-certification, eco-consciousness
In the recent decade, individuals have become more environmentally concerned, while companies realized that consumers’ needs and desires are changing. This, in turn, has created new environmentally oriented practices, like ecological labeling, to satisfy consumer demands. Though eco-labels were created with a purpose to ease consumers to make their buying choices, a certain degree of confusion has emerged among the customers concerning the precise meaning of eco-labels. In Lithuania “Ekologinis žemės ūkis” (“Ecological Farming”) eco-label has been issued in 2009. However, it is still new to consumers in addition to generally low level of ecological labeling practice awareness. With regard to the issue of consumer confusion and the distrust of eco-certification, the purpose of the research was to investigate perceptions of Lithuanian consumers of eco-labels and in particular Lithuanian ecological label “Ekologinis žemės ūkis.”
Although, the findings revealed that introduction of eco-label “Ekologinis žemės ūkis” was positively perceived, suggesting that it might make more people to consider their health and environment more seriously, the study participants recognized both positive and negative aspects of the label. However, consumers reported not feeling totally “safe” while choosing eco-labeled products and distrust producers and ecological labels because of their claims.