Monday, October 3, 2011

LOHAS Consumers

The Trend That’s Shifting Consumer’s Consciousness
By Denise Turner, ASID, CID, CMG
Color Turners

LOHAS is becoming one of the hottest new trends and is rapidly changing the way we do business. So what’s LOHAS and what’s it all about? LOHAS is the acronym for (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability), a market segment focused on health and fitness, the environment, personal development, sustainable living, and social justice.

Who Are Their Consumers?
LOHAS describes an estimated $290 billion U.S. marketplace for goods and services focused on health, the environment, social justice, personal development and sustainable living. The 41 million American consumers (approximately 13-19% percent) attracted to this market represent a sizable group in this country, but their power as a consumer market virtually remains untapped. Additionally LOHAS is an international trend. http://www.lohas.com/

What’s driving the LOHAS Phenomenon?
Consumers are evaluating every aspect of their life, in doing so; they are making more mindful decisions and prioritizing spending behaviors. Today’s consumers are demanding a greater value from products and services. The driving force behind this is to make the most of out of everything. More than ever before, there is a desire to conserve our natural resources, be self-reliant and to buy American made. Farmer’s markets are springing up in every community. Lawns are being torn out, to be replaced with vegetable gardens. Choices as small as taking public transportation to work instead of driving, cooking dinner rather than going out and growing foods instead of buying from the store are some examples of trends that are catching on. Although these changes may appear small to us, collectively they are changing the way companies approach green business strategy.

How LOHAS Is Affecting Color & Design Trends?
As consumers, we want to be surprised and delighted again, but not by artificial hype. We are looking for a personal connection and authentic brand stories. More than ever before, we want to understand how products and food sources were created and their origin. We are gravitating towards nurturing colors, tactile materials and products that evoke a sense of authenticity. Colors that mimic organic produce and vegetable-died textiles are hot. We’re adding splashes of accent colors on less expensive home décor items such as paint and accessories. For long-term investment items such as furniture and cabinetry we’re opting for neutral colors, for their versatility and staying power.

Adam Barry
Allow me to introduce you to Adam Barry, a phenomenal young man whose philosophies are in alignment with the LOHAS. Adam became a student at San Antonio High School, two and a half years ago, where he immediately became active in the Food Justice & Gardening Program. Adam is passionate about Organic Agriculture and Sustainable Living. He believes that we have a lack of respect for plants and animals.

Adam’s Solutions to Our Food Problems:
• Create more farms; have fewer freeways.
• Grow your own food.
• Support locally grown farmers and buy in season- Note: The further the food ships the more chemicals are needed to preserve them.
• But if you want to make this calmer than a cucumber farmer, angrier than a honey bee whose hive was robbed, just ask Adam about (GMO) Genetically Modified Foods and how scientists are manipulating and mutating our foods, all in the name of money.

Adam graduates from San Antonio High School in two months. Then he will begin at Santa Rosa Community College, where he will earn his degree in Organic Agriculture and Sustainable Living. While attending college he’ll be working and living on the farm. Keep your eye on Adam, this 16-year old dynamo who’s changing the way we think about food and the way we produce it.

San Antonio High School Food Justice and Gardening Program
San Antonio High School, in Claremont, CA, is an alternative education high school. The city of Claremont is a considerably wealthy community, however, a significant portion of the students at San Antonio High School are racial/ethnic minorities, come from low socio-economic backgrounds and receive free or reduced school lunches. Many of the students enrolled in this high school have had contact with law enforcement and are thus considered at-risk youth. Additionally, numerous students have had trouble passing state standardized tests. As a result, the pairing of teachers, high school students and college interns in the food justice and gardening program has been incredibly pivotal for these students. Our work in the construction and maintenance of the schoolyard garden, the outdoor classroom, lectures and more are all designed to improve the health, work habits and self-worth among these students. http://www.dosomething.org/project/san-antonio-high-school-food-justice-and-gardening-program

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