Consumer advocates are calling for consumers to be allowed to login to their grocery stores to purchase foraged food online.
In a blog post, Consumers United for Food, Feed and Water, which represents retailers and retailers’ representatives, argues that if shoppers are allowed to log on to the site, consumers would have a greater sense of trust in the products they purchase.
“Online grocery shopping is a vital tool for consumers, as it provides consumers the opportunity to make informed purchasing decisions,” said the post, which was posted Wednesday.
“Consumers are more likely to purchase from trusted online retailers, and it’s important that consumers who are considering purchasing online are able to make the most informed choice possible.
That is why it is critically important for consumers not to let their trust in retailers slip and not trust that these trusted online sellers are trustworthy.”
The Consumers Union also urged shoppers to use online shopping to make their own decisions, and the group’s executive director, Amy Smith, said that the online experience would “enable consumers to make choices about which food they purchase, which restaurants they eat at, and how often.”
Smith also said that shoppers would be able to see whether or not an online retailer is participating in a campaign that seeks to educate consumers about health and safety standards.
Consumers United for Consumer Rights also urged retailers to allow shoppers to opt out of participating in online marketing campaigns, such as the one launched by the National Farmers Union.
The National Farmers Association has said that its campaign will educate shoppers about the risks of organically-grown food and that it has helped more than 2 million farmers in nearly 60 states.
The USDA says that more than 7 million consumers have signed up for its voluntary online survey, and more than 500,000 people have participated online.
The USDA also has plans to begin allowing online grocery shopping in the future.
(Reporting by Stephanie Wang; Editing by David Gregorio)