Consumers prefer no plastic packaging over recycled plastic

Global Data

Thursday, 29 August, 2019

Consumers prefer no plastic packaging over recycled plastic

Research from GlobalData suggests that consumers prefer to purchase products without plastic over products with recycled plastic. Research indicates that consumers’ purchasing choices are influenced by the reduced plastic content of product packaging.

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

“Many brands and supermarket chains have either chosen to introduce packaging with reduced or recycled plastic, or remove plastic packaging completely as with Morrisons rollout of ‘buy bagless’ fruit and vegetable aisles and Waitrose’s recent ‘unpacked’ refill trial,” Henry said.

Alongside consumer willingness to alter their shopping habits, the potential margin benefits of reducing or eliminating plastic packaging should encourage retailers to launch their own refill stations. A survey carried out by GlobalData in August 2019 revealed that 71.3% of consumers across all demographics would be willing to use a refill service similar to that implemented at Waitrose.

As Malaysia and the Philippines limit their intake of plastic waste from overseas, the UK government has encouraged the implementation of greener changes, with researchers analysing consumer response to biodegradable packaging.

The efficacy of the UK government’s decision to invest £60m ($108 million) to reduce single-use plastics with biodegradable alternatives is yet to be determined, as research from GlobalData indicates that consumers are influenced more by products without any plastic than biodegradable alternatives.

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