35% of consumers more likely to purchase products without any plastic at all compared to goods with recycled plastic, says GlobalData

Consumers’ purchasing choices are influenced by the reduced plastic content of a products packaging. In fact, 35% of consumers were more likely to purchase products without any plastic at all compared to ones with recycled plastic, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analysis company.

George Henry, Consumer Analyst at GlobalData, commented: “This provides a specific insight for manufacturers as consumers would pursue plastic-free packaging rather than recyclable.

“Many brands and supermarket chains have either chosen to introduce packaging with reduced or recycled plastic such as Solero’s first wrapper-less multipack, or remove plastic packaging completely as with Morrisons roll-out of “buy bagless” fruit and vegetable aisles and Waitrose’s recent “unpacked” refill trial.”

Consumers’ willingness to change their shopping habits, along with potential margin benefits should encourage other retailers to launch their own refill sections.

GlobalData’s August 2019 survey highlighted that 71.3% of consumers across all demographics would be willing to use a similar refill service (whether at Waitrose or another grocer).

Henry adds: “Therefore, the government’s announcement to invest £60m to help cut single-use plastics by creating new forms of biodegradable packaging will have its limitations as consumers are influenced more by products without any plastic than biodegradable alternatives.”

It is the largest ever investment for a single project, with £60m from the British taxpayer expected to be complemented by £149m from private business.

Henry concludes: “With countries like Malaysia and the Philippines now limiting the intake of plastic waste from abroad, the UK government has forced greener changes as a matter of national urgency – whether or not the biodegradable packaging route will sit well with consumers is still to be seen.”

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