Despite its benefits, adoption of organic farming is low in Brazil. We used the theory of planned behavior to determine factors that influenced a farmer's decision to adopt organic production methods and identify key social psychological barriers. We focused on strawberry production as a model, and surveyed 83 conventional strawberry farmers (response rate 90.2%), and found that attitudes and perceived behavioral control (PBC) predicted intent to adopt organic production (r2 = 37.2%). For farmers interested in conversion, beliefs about the improved social/financial status from conversion were positively related to their attitude toward conversion, and the lack of control over informational and physical resources was negatively related to PBC. For farmers disinterested in conversion, the influence of their social norms was stronger than for interested farmers, and PBC most strongly influenced their intention to convert. These results suggest that different strategies should be pursued for encouraging conversion to organic strawberry production. For interested farmers, their interest may be enhanced by addressing their attitudinal beliefs, and allaying concerns over access to technical assistance. For disinterested producers, it may be important to raise the salience of their positive attitudinal beliefs, involve people whose opinions they value, and enhance their perceived control over information and risks.
- Organic conversion
- Theory of planned behavior