Britain's organic food market has doubled in size since the turn of the century, a new report has claimed.
Market research firm Datamonitor says that a greater awareness of the importance of healthy eating among UK residents saw the industry increase to £1.6 billion in 2005.
Today's study predicts that this growth will be sustained until the end of the decade, with the organic food market forecast to stand at £2.7 billion by 2010.
Daniel Bone, consumer markets analyst at Datamonitor and report author, said that today's statistics were indicative of the growing rejection of processed food across Europe.
"Environmental and ethical concerns obviously influence consumers, but buying organic is not typically an altruistic act. Concerns over food safety, health and perceived superior taste are the core motivations for buying organics," he said.
On a continental basis, Germans are the most likely to buy organic food, with the country's £3.5 billion organic market the largest in Europe.
Meanwhile, Britain's organic growth of 97 per cent is outstripped only by Sweden and Spain.
Mr Bone explained that two-thirds of British respondents had said they thought eating healthily was important.
"Freshness is not just associated with healthy eating but also with enhanced sensory quality and therefore superior enjoyment. This is a refreshing change in today's environment where marketing of low fat, low salt, low sugar, zero calories options has perpetuated a slightly negative message about eating and drinking," the analyst added.