Sustainability advice on packaging urged

By Aidan Fortune

- Last updated on GMT

Consumers are calling out for more sustainability information on packaging
Consumers are calling out for more sustainability information on packaging
Consumers are calling out for better guidance on the sustainability of food and drink product packaging.

The European Consumer Packaging Perceptions Survey, conducted independently by Coleman Parkes Research and commissioned by Pro Carton, revealed that 88% of UK shoppers want on-pack information that highlights how environmentally friendly the packaging format is.

The survey found that over a third (36%) of Brits already shun products because of concerns about packaging, while nine out of ten shoppers want packaging to be easily recyclable.

Those aged over 50 years old in the UK were proved to be the most critical of brands’ and retailers’ actions in terms of sustainable packaging. Eight in ten of the over-50s in the UK demanded more should be done to introduce environmentally friendly packaging. The study also found that 92% would prefer carton over plastic.

While the over-50s are complaining about brands, Millennials (19- to 29-year-olds) are actually doing something about it. The survey found that over half (53%) of those surveyed said they had decided to switch brands in the last year because of a product’s packaging, with recyclability and over-packaging cited as the main reasons.

Tony Hitchin, general manager at Pro Carton, said: “The research points to the rapidly changing attitudes and behaviours of consumers since the sustainability debate came to the fore in 2017. Retailers and brands know they must satisfy customers and, to boot, the government in their demands for more environmentally friendly packaging.”

Just one-fifth (20%) of UK consumers surveyed did not think there should be a tax to force retailers and brands to adopt more sustainable packaging.

UK consumers are still some way behind their European counterparts in their commitment to environmentally friendly packaging. Over two-thirds (68%) said the environmental impact of a product’s packaging affected their purchasing decisions, with shoppers in Spain (81%) and Germany (77%) even more likely to be influenced by the packaging’s environmental credentials. 

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