The problem of thoughtless shopping
Christmas season is almost over, and we can’t help but reflect on the most wonderful time of the year and the role it plays in our consumer behavior. Every year around Christmas time, global consumption is reaching its peak: Everyone has a long list of friends and relatives they want to make happy with a gift: Another scarf that was produced under unethical circumstances and won’t ever be worn; another toy for a kid that already has plenty, that eventually will end up in the landfill or being burnt because barely any kids toys can be recycled. This, of course, is not only a problem during Christmas season. All year round supermarkets sell vegetables that are wrapped in plastic, single use water bottles from twenty different brands, cheap meat from mass production. And while more and more people care about this issue and try to shop more consciously, the majority still seems to be blind to this issue. What can be done though?
While ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ is always the best way to avoid unnecessary trash, it will be impossible to get the entire world to stop buying things: We need to eat, and jobs and our economy depend on it. So why don't we instead focus on offering more products that contain less plastic or other packaging, that come from a fairer production or that will be used for a long time?
Consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable products
As we elaborate in our last blog post on the example of Germany, according to a survey half of the Germans share a general interest in sustainability, while 30% would like to try and live more sustainably themselves. Research institute Civey has digged a little deeper regarding food consumption and found out that 63,8 per cent would like to buy products that are sustainable and 75,9 per cent stated that they would encourage supermarkets to completely eliminate single use packaging in the long run. While this all sounds very promising, their next findings also show one of the biggest issues: Only 3,9 of all the people living in the city named organic supermarkets as their favourite place of purchase. Half of them preferably go to supermarkets like EDEKA, one third to discounters like LIDL, where they stated to not find enough sustainable products.
We at DURA|NATURA believe that availability is one of the most critical aspects of shopping sustainably. When given the choice at the point of sale, many might decide for the more sustainable option: A survey of DH Smith, one of the leading companies in Europe for sustainable packaging shows that nine out of ten people would pick a packaging with less plastic if given the choice between two otherwise equal products. Furthermore, 62% of the respondents said they would be willing to pay more for the option with less plastic. In a similar survey in the Netherlands, 61% also responded they would pay more, one fifth of them even 20%-40% more of the normal price. It seems that price is less of an issue as it seems, if the benefit is big enough and easily recognizable for the consumer, and they can find it next to the products they would otherwise buy.
How we can help
DURA|NATURA is a combination of the words ‘durable’, French for sustainable, and 'nature' and it is exactly what we stand for: Giving our nature a chance to survive through the support of more sustainable products. Do you have a product with an innovative packaging, a fair trade background or an organic production that you want to place in the German or Dutch market? With our expertise in Sales and our knowledge of the market we help you with placing your products in the shops that are right for your brand. With our competences in Online Marketing and Design we help you to create a strong Social Media strategy that is right for you and that reflects the values and beliefs of your unique product. We believe that the more eco-friendly products there are in the market, and the more information about the benefits are available to the consumers, the more the habit to consume these goods can grow. Therefore, we don’t only want to support your brand and help you to reach your goals in 2020, but also contribute to a change in consumption in the German and Dutch market.