Survey shows more than half of consumers would pay more for sustainable products

BY Australian Retailers Association
12 July 2019

Quality and price remain top consumer concerns, creating a challenge for companies to deliver recycled and recyclable products at minimal additional cost.

More than half of consumers say they would pay more for sustainable products designed to be reused or recycled, according to results of a survey from Accenture.

The survey of 6,000 consumers in 11 countries across North America, Europe and Asia, results of which were previewed at the American Chemistry Council (ACC) Annual Meeting earlier this month, found that while consumers remain primarily focused on quality and price, 83% believe it’s important or extremely important for companies to design products that are meant to be reused or recycled. Nearly three-quarters (72%) of respondents said they’re currently buying more environmentally friendly products than they were five years ago, and 81% said they expect to buy more over the next five years.

Unsurprisingly, quality and price led consumers’ considerations when making purchases, noted by 89% and 84% of respondents, respectively, compared with 49% who cited health and safety considerations and 37% who said environmental impact.

The survey findings also indicated that consumers believe the chemical industry — which plays a key role in driving recycled and reusable technologies and materials — lacks concern about its environmental impact.

Specifically, one in four consumers (26%) said they believe that the chemical industry is the least concerned of nine industries included in the survey about its impact on the environment, Consumers also ranked chemical companies the lowest among industries for the reliability of communications regarding the environmental impact of their products and services, with 72% not very confident or not confident at all in these communications.

In other survey findings, plastics was perceived to be the least environmentally friendly type of packaging, cited by more than three-fourths (77%) of consumers, with paper products perceived to be the most environmentally friendly, cited by 55% of respondents.

About the Research
To identify consumer purchasing and consumption habits regarding different types of packaging and products, as well as consumer views related to recycling and reuse of materials, Accenture surveyed 6,000 consumers, ages 18 to 70, in 11 countries: the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Mexico, the United Kingdom, China, India, Indonesia and Japan. The survey was conducted in April 2019.

About Accenture
Accenture is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialised skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions. For more information, visit www.accenture.com

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Australian Retailers Association

Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is Australia’s largest retail association representing Australia’s $310 billion sector, which employs more than 1.2 million people. As the retail industry’s peak representative body, the ARA works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit www.retail.org.au or call 1300 368 041.

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