Moving consumers to sustainable choices

Thursday 20 October 2022


The UK retail sector has set itself an ambitious target of being net zero by 2040. It’s become clear that the sector cannot achieve this alone and moving consumers to more sustainable choices is a crucial component for success.

In conjunction with the British Retail Consortium, we’ve spoken to thousands of UK consumers, uncovering how aware they are about where their behaviour drives emissions and the actions they’re already taking, alongside how ready and willing they are to adapt in the future.

Learnings have shown 70% of consumers openly admit they don’t really understand the contributors to their carbon footprint, with many overestimating the benefits of everyday actions and underestimating the impact of more powerful actions. There are also findings of unwillingness to act on the elements that would have the greatest impact.

This presents the sector with a challenge.

To shape more effective consumer behaviour, an intervention will be needed, and we see four key stages to getting there. From industry-wide cohesion on where to focus efforts, to better educating consumers and offering stronger incentives to drive the change. If all else fails, tougher regulation from the government may be needed.

The path to net zero may not be easy, but it’s certainly becoming clearer.


OC&C experts:

Matt Coode, Partner

Tom Charlick, Partner

Matt Wills, Associate Partner

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