Report shows a third of consumers prefer sustainable brands

London, UK – A new international study by Unilever reveals that a third of consumers (33%) are now choosing to buy from brands they believe are doing social or environmental good.

  • Unilever study reveals a third of consumers are now buying from brands based on their social and environmental impact
  • An estimated €966 billion opportunity exists for brands that make their sustainability credentials clear

The study asked 20,000 adults from five countries how their sustainability concerns impact their choices in-store and at home. Crucially, it then mapped their claims against real purchase decisions, giving a more accurate picture than ever of what people are actually buying – and why.

As well as confirming the public’s high expectations of brands when it comes to having a positive social and environmental impact, the study’s findings uncover an unprecedented opportunity for companies that get it right. More than one in five (21%) of the people surveyed said they would actively choose brands if they made their sustainability credentials clearer on their packaging and in their marketing. This represents a potential untapped opportunity of €966 billion out of a €2.5 trillion total market for sustainable goods.1

The scale of this opportunity is also further borne out by Unilever’s own financial performance. Of its hundreds of brands, those such as Dove, Hellmann’s and Ben & Jerry’s, that have integrated sustainability into both their purpose and products delivered nearly half the company’s global growth in 2015. Collectively, they are also growing 30% faster than the rest of the business.

The study also suggests that the trend for purpose-led purchasing is greater among consumers in emerging economies than in developed markets. While 53% of shoppers in the UK and 78% in the US say they feel better when they buy products that are sustainably produced, that number rises to 88% in India and 85% in both Brazil and Turkey.

Keith Weed, Unilever’s Chief Marketing and Communications Officer says: “This research confirms that sustainability isn’t a nice-to-have for businesses. In fact, it has become an imperative. To succeed globally, and especially in emerging economies across Asia, Africa and Latin America, brands should go beyond traditional focus areas like product performance and affordability. Instead, they must act quickly to prove their social and environmental credentials and show consumers they can be trusted with the future of the planet and communities, as well as their own bottom lines.”

The study identifies two probable reasons for consumers’ greater focus on sustainable purchasing in emerging economies compared to developed markets. First is direct exposure to the negative impact of unsustainable business practices, such as water and energy shortages, food poverty and poor air quality. And second is the power of social norms. So, while Brazilian, Indian and Turkish people feel pressure from their family, friends and even their children to buy greener, more socially responsible products, this sense of social scrutiny is currently less prevalent in the UK and US.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE ON UNILEVER.COM

The Sustainability Imperative

It’s hard to ignore the siren call to protect the planet. Or to remain unmoved by those facing increasingly poor living conditions across the globe.

As a result, many consumers have adopted more sustainable behaviors. Others are working for or supporting organizations dedicated to social and environmental change.

Consumers are trying to be responsible citizens of the world, and they expect the same from corporations. So when it comes to purchasing, they are doing their homework. Checking labels before buying. Looking at web sites for information on business and manufacturing practices. Paying attention to public opinion on specific brands in the news or on social media.

Key Influencers for Those Willing to Pay More

Among the 66% of global respondents willing to pay more, over 50% of them are influenced by key sustainability factors, such as a product being made from fresh, natural and/or organic ingredients (69%), a company being environmentally friendly (58%), and company being known for its commitment to social value (56%). Sales, and coupons didn’t even make the top five. For this group, personal values are more important than personal benefits, such as cost or convenience…

Read the full article on www.neilsen.com. 

 

We made plastic. We depend on it. Now we’re drowning in it.

 If plastic had been invented when the Pilgrims sailed from Plymouth, England, to North America—and the Mayflower had been stocked with bottled water and plastic-wrapped snacks—their plastic trash would likely still be around, four centuries later.

If the Pilgrims had been like many people today and simply tossed their empty bottles and wrappers over the side, Atlantic waves and sunlight would have worn all that plastic into tiny bits. And those bits might still be floating around the world’s oceans today, sponging up toxins to add to the ones already in them, waiting to be eaten by some hapless fish or oyster, and ultimately perhaps by one of us.

We should give thanks that the Pilgrims didn’t have plastic, I thought recently as I rode a train to Plymouth along England’s south coast. I was on my way to see a man who would help me make sense of the whole mess we’ve made with plastic, especially in the ocean.

Because plastic wasn’t invented until the late 19th century, and production really only took off around 1950, we have a mere 9.2 billion tons of the stuff to deal with. Of that, more than 6.9 billion tons have become waste. And of that waste, a staggering 6.3 billion tons never made it to a recycling bin—a figure that stunned the scientists who crunched the numbers in 2017…

 READ FULL ARTICLE FROM NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
by Photographs by 

SmartPlastic announces global product trials with Coveris

(Knoxville, Tennessee) May 1, 2018- Smart Plastic Technologies, LLC, is a specialist in the development, production and marketing of unique additives for use in polymers which provide biodegradation, antimicrobial, antifungal and anticounterfeit properties in finished products. The Company is pleased to announce that it has reached an agreement with Coveris for the development of a range of additive products designed for global applications in various climactic locations. SPT additives being tested include Bio-assimilation, Anti-microbial, Anti-fungal and Reducer.

As a leading international manufacturing company, Coveris is dedicated to providing solutions that enhance the safety, quality and convenience of products we use every day. In partnership with the most respected brands in the world, Coveris develops vital products that protect everything from the food we eat, to medical supplies, to the touch screen device in our pockets, contributing to the lives of millions every day.

“We are honoured to have the opportunity to work with Coveris. We see this as an important milestone in the continued development of Smart Plastic Technologies as a leader in our industry.” said Tim Murtaugh, CEO of SPT.