Production, materials and recycling: Interest in sustainable packaging remains high; consumers want clear communication and certificates and labels are also relevant.
Sustainability sells: just under one-third of consumers prefer products with sustainable packaging when shopping, according to the latest edition of the Sustainable Product Packaging study by global strategy and marketing consultancy Simon-Kucher & Partners. In this context, 66 percent of consumers wants to see information on sustainability directly on the packaging; 20 percent prefer information on the supermarket shelf or in the product description in the online store. Just under a third also rely on independent certificates and labels, with the "Blue Angel" certificate, the German government's independent environmental label, having the strongest impact, says the survey.
Dr. Daniel Bornemann, Partner and expert for Paper & Packaging at Simon-Kucher & Partners: "Our last survey in March revealed that just 11 percent of consumers feel well informed, and this knowledge gap needs to be filled. The results of the current survey make it clear that paper and packaging manufacturers must clearly communicate the added value of their sustainable products. Preferably as directly as possible, i.e. on the packaging and at the point of sale."
Great interest in manufacturing and recycling
In terms of content, several factors are of interest to consumers. Information on the recyclability of the packaging is just as important as information on fair production conditions (37 percent in each case). But biodegradability (35 percent) and material origin (29 percent) are also important. The carbon footprint, on the other hand, is associated with packaging by only a few (18 percent).
"Direct information on the packaging can make production and recycling transparent: This reduces the complexity of the issues and sustainability is made more tangible. The low relevance of the CO2 footprint is surprising at first glance, but it also shows that packaging has so far been primarily associated with waste. Production and the associated carbon footprint are still rarely associated," Bornemann says.
Sustainable packaging is particularly relevant for beverage packaging, as the study results show. Here, respondents have a clear preference: consumers perceive types of packaging with a deposit as significantly more sustainable than packaging without a deposit, with refillable glass bottles in particular being named most frequently (69 percent).
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