Do Consumer Favor Sustainable Brands for Their Products and Services Needs? NYU Stern School Research Dives Deep into the Data For Answers




Do Consumer Favor Sustainable Brands for Their Products and Services Needs? NYU Stern School Research Dives Deep into the Data For Answers

Many people in consumer marketing are wondering!  In these weekly commentaries the G&A Institute team offers media and experts’ shared perspectives on various issues and matters related to corporate sustainability, responsibility; and, sustainable, responsible and impact investing.

In recent months the content frequently has focused on trends in the consumer market -- are consumers reacting to brand-facing companies positioning themselves as sustainability leaders? Is this a successful strategy?  Worth the effort?  Are consumers now favoring sustainable or green (or pick your term of definition) for their products & services at retail?  Wondering?
Our news, feature and research results -- such as in the fashion and footwear industries, the auto industry, food & beverages, and certain other categories with brand leaders often introducing sustainable products alongside their usual cash cows. We have some items for you this week along these lines.

Writing in the Harvard Business Review, Tensie Whelan, professor at New York University Stern School of Business, and leader of the NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business, and Randi Kronthal-Sacco, director of Corporate Outreach for the Center (and formerly with Johnson & Johnson) describe the results of their recent in-depth research project. 

This research centered on trying to answer the question -- do U.S. consumers actually purchase sustainably marketed products?  (Spoiler alert: yes – you must read the HBR article to find out more.) 

Whelan and Kronthal-Sacco used volumes of data sets from bar scan codes at retail for food, drug, dollar, and mass merchandisers, looking at 36 categories and 71,000+ SKUs, accounting for 40% of consumer products goods (CPG) sales over a 5-year period.

So, what did they find to be the largest share of sustainability-marketed products?  Almost $1-in-$5 purchases at retail are for toilet tissue, facial tissue (think: forest products); milk, yogurt (the yield of countless dairy farmers); coffee (lots of attention on the global coffee-growing belt circling the Earth, and worker conditions therein); salty snacks (really?); and bottled juices (you notice that Coke and Pepsi and other beverage marketers are advertising their shift away from sugary drinks).  At the bottom of market share:  laundry care, floor cleaners and chocolate candy (accounting for a 5% share).

Say Tensie and Randi:  pay attention, marketers and those all along the retail value chain, from grower field and factory floor to shelf space.  Consumers are voting with their dollars, for sustainable and against un-sustainable brands.  Winners in the corporate sector include PepsiCo and Unilever; laggards include Kraft Heinz. (Unilever:  think labels like Seventh Generation, Sundial Brands and Pukka Herbs.)

And we are seeing in the many stories we bring you each week about consumers and sustainability, the future for sustainable CPG at retail is increasing – look at the apparel industry.  The agora is alive and well with many more sustainably branded products on the shelves.  That’s the good news for sustainability professionals.

The NYU researchers used data from IRi (the research house for CGP, retail and health and beauty – information at: https://www.iriworldwide.com/en-US/Insights)

Congratulations to our colleagues Tensie Whelan and Randi Kronthal-Sacco at NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business for sharing their insights and perspectives.

 

This Week's Top Stories

Research: Actually, Consumers Do Buy Sustainable Products
(Thursday - June 20, 2019) Source: Harvard Business Review - NYU Stern’s Center for Sustainable Business just completed extensive research into U.S. consumers’ actual purchasing of consumer packaged goods (CPG), using data contributed by IRI, and found that 50% of CPG growth from 2013 to... 

Global Sustainability: Continuing Forward Momentum!

New Platform Hailed as ‘Netflix of Supply Chain Sustainability’
(Friday - June 14, 2019) Source: Thomas Net - Set to revolutionize supply chain sustainability, a new web platform created by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is now available for professionals to more efficiently keep up with the increasing sustainability demands of the... 

The Flying Dutchmen - How The Netherlands Wants To Make Aviation Sustainable
(Tuesday - June 18, 2019) Source: Forbes - Earlier this month, aviation executives from all over the world flew to Seoul for the annual meeting of the IATA, the International Air Transport Association. 

8 Characteristics Of Millennials That Support Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
(Thursday - June 20, 2019) Source: Forbes - Sustainable and ethical business practices are forcing most organizations to conform to environmental, social, and governance tenets such as diversity & inclusion and transparency. Millennials are investing in and working for... 

 

Sponsored Message

 

Sustainability & the World of Fashion�

Does ‘Sustainable Fashion’ Really Mean Anything?
(Tuesday - June 18, 2019) Source: Wall Street Journal - Sustainability” was the buzziest buzzword in the air during last week’s edition of Pitti Uomo, the world’s largest men’s fashion trade show, in Florence, Italy. As I navigated countless rows of designers’ booths, those pitching... 

5 Sustainable And Stylish Furniture Brands In Europe
(Wednesday - June 19, 2019) Source: Euronews - We have provided you with 5 brands across Europe that aim to make furniture with the smallest environmental impact. 

How to Create Sustainable Fashion From Recycled Clothing
(Thursday - June 20, 2019) Source: Forbes - Ripped or torn stockings. A stained blouse. A discolored dress. A lonely sock. The washed-out T-shirt. The worn-out jeans. Or the one that you never wore. Or the one that don’t fit anymore. The skirt with the color that wasn’t... 

 

Quick Scan of the Headlines:
ESG Topics & Front-of-Mind Issues

Without swift action on climate change, heat waves could kill thousands in U.S. cities 
Tuesday - June 18, 2019) Source: NBC News 

China’s economic census uncovers more fake data as officials promise ‘zero tolerance’ to data manipulation  
(Thursday - June 20, 2019) Source: South China Morning Post

Headlines From the Corporate Sector

Dow releases annual Sustainability Report
(Tuesday - June 18, 2019) Source: Yahoo Finance - Dow (DOW) has released its 2018 Sustainability Report, which shares its progress against its 2025 Sustainability Goals and demonstrates its commitment to collaborate with value chain partners and other stakeholders to find more...

Sustainability and the World of Auto Manufacturing…

BMW joins sustainable natural rubber platform
(Friday - June 14, 2019) Source: Tire Business 

VW Is Closing in on Ford Deal on Electric, Autonomous Cars  
(Friday - June 14, 2019) Source: Yahoo Finance

GM’s race to outflank Tesla may be stalling out
(Tuesday - June 18, 2019) Source: CNBC

 

NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS:
G&A INSTITUTE'S SUSTAINABILITY RESEARCH ANALYST INTERNSHIP
FOR 2019/2020
G&A’s unpaid internship opportunity is for qualified students interested in learning more about corporate sustainability and corporate ESG performance (“Environmental, Social, Governance”) issues. G&A Institute Interns learn important elements about the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards for sustainability reporting as well as other common frameworks such as CDP, RobecoSAM CSA (DJSI), SASB, IIRC, SDGs, and concepts in sustainability such as materiality, stakeholder engagement, external assurance, balance, comparability, and many others that can be used in their future careers.

Click here for more information and full description of requirements. Interested parties should submit their resume with required accompanying documentation by June 15th!

________________________________________

NEW G&A INSTITUTE
RESEARCH
AVAILABLE:

FLASH REPORT: 86% of S&P 500 Index� Companies Publish Sustainability / Responsibility Reports in 2018
Click here to view the full report!

________________________________________

G&A Institute Sustainability Update
Informative, insightful, thought provoking
Governance & Accountability Institute's blog focusing on the sustainable world evolving daily before our eyes. Read it, absorb it, question it and challenge.

Affording an Unaffordable Utility Upgrade

In the Skies Overhead – Global Airline Passenger Volume Set to Double Over Next Two Decades. What Could the Environmental Impact of More Air Travel Be?

For the Board Room and C-Suite, Questions and Advice From the Harvard Business Review and ESG and Sustainability

Upcoming Events

_________________________________________
G&A RESEARCH

Sector Study on Sustainability Materiality of the SDG Targets & GRI Indicators

FLASH REPORT: 85% of S&P 500 Index® Companies Publish Sustainability Reports in 2017

Learn More About G&A Research

 

Missed A Webinar -- GRESB, CDP, RobecoSAM (DJSI), GRI Standards?
Check them out here!

Access archived recordings & slides via the links above. Have an idea for a future webinar, email us at info@ga-institute.com

________________________________________

Featured
Governance & Accountability
Institute Service
Critical ESG Issues Management
Mapping, organizing, understanding, and addressing critical issues...
More on Critical ESG Issues Management

_________________________________________



The G&A team develops timely insights and perspectives on Corporate Sustainability, Responsibility and Citizenship and we share with you on G&A's To The Point! platform – access is complementary with your registration

________________________________________

GRI'S USA, UK & IRELAND
DATA PARTNER

G&A Institute is the Data Partner for the Global Reporting Initiative's (GRI) in the USA, UK and Republic of Ireland. We identify, receive, collect, analyze, database, and communicate about every report issued in any of the 3 countries. Over the past 6+ years, G&A analyzed 6,000-plus sustainability reports in this pro bono role and databased 100+ important data points for each report. Find out more @ G&A's What's A Data Partner

_________________________________________

Navigating the way to sustainability...
Contents © 2009 - 2019

All Rights Reserved

Copyrights for other providers are noted where appropriate.
Please credit the source if quoted.
_________________________________________

 

The Sustainability Highlights eNewsletter is prepared by Governance & Accountability Institute, Inc. based on continuous monitoring of trends and developments in Sustainability and ESG. Governance & Accountability Instiute is the "Sustainability Headquarters™" for clients in the corporate, investment, public and social sectors. Based in New York, G&A is a for-profit consulting organization providing a range of value-added strategies, services and resources related to ESG & sustainability to clients in the corporate and capital markets communities. For G&A's full range of services, click on each of the links below:

Sustainability / ESG Consulting Services

Communications & Recognition Services

Investor Relation Services

For more information, contact Governance & Accountability Institute, Inc. (New York, New York)
Tel 646.430.8230 | Web www.ga-institute.com | Email info@ga-institute.com