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Brits will fork out for ethical products

Over two-thirds (67%) of consumers are prepared to pay a premium for environmentally-friendly products, according to new research.

The survey of 2,000 people by media agency, MediaCom, also found that good value for money and good quality products are the top priority for consumers when deciding which brands to purchase goods from, while the number of people prioritising cost and quality has fallen since 2017.

Brand ethics and behaviours are seen as increasingly important by consumers, with the majority stating they will pay more for brands which are seen to have a positive impact on society.

More than two in three respondents (68%) said they were prepared to pay a premium for products that do not test on animals and 60% would pay more for brands which give back to the local community.

The survey also found a large majority of people (81%) who believe brands should be held accountable for their environmental impact, with 88% expecting companies to shoulder the responsibility of tackling plastic waste and pollution.

However, the study identified a lack of trust in companies’ commitment to environmental sustainability, with 63% believing that brands overstate their green credentials.

Only 50% of consumers could name a brand that they associate with good causes, compared to two thirds of respondents in the same survey last year.

“More businesses than ever before are aligning themselves with a cause to convince consumers that they hold genuine values as a company. However, it is clear that communicating brand purpose is not hitting home in many cases,” said Sue Unerman, MediaCom’s chief transformation officer.

Unerman added that brands should not put having a purpose in the “too hard basket” but should prove they are investing in causes that resonate with their customers, and are committed for the long term.