Consumers demand more action and education on environmental issues

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Last night on BBC Dragon’s Den, Deborah Meaden was scathing when Mesoa mens skincare claimed their products were organic but failed to mention this on the packaging. Deborah was spot on according to new American Express Trendex research which reveals consumers expect transparency from businesses on environmental issues and their efforts to tackle climate change. Consumers what to know what’s in your products and whether they are sustainable and whether you are making the delivery as planet friendly as possible.

The research from American Express has found that UK consumers have high expectations of businesses to be more vocal on environmental issues and efforts to tackle climate change – and will offer support to those that are.

For those businesses that do demonstrate action in this critical area, they will be rewarded with a more loyal customer base; Around eight in 10 of UK adults agreed they would choose to shop with a business that takes actions to reduce the impact of climate change (80%), and they would be more likely to trust a company that works to address environmental issues (79%).

The Trendex research showed that consumers are also turning to business for help when it comes to making more informed choices about their purchases. Almost eight in 10 (78%) want companies to educate them on ways to reduce their carbon footprint when shopping with them. Furthermore, 82% of respondents would like companies to provide options to offset carbon emissions associated with their purchases.

What can you do?

Your products may or may not already be sustainable, but the one thing that you can do is shout about the parts of your business that are. Do you use paper based packaging tape rather than plastic based? Do you use compostable mailers or packaging made from recycled card? If so you should be telling your customers.

It may be impossible to make every product totally sustainable, but if you can inform and educate your customers on making more environmental choices – perhaps opting for economy delivery rather than express – the research indicates that they will appreciate your efforts and become more loyal in the future.

What are American Express doing?

Since 2018, American Express has remained a carbon neutral company across its operations and has been powered with 100% renewable energy. Last year, the company committed to net-zero carbon emissions by 2035 and announced a $10 million grant commitment to organisations and initiatives that drive action on climate change through 2025. Now American Express is taking further action to support the reduction and removal of carbon emissions through a range of innovative solutions.

To reduce consumption of virgin plastic and eliminate waste, the company is expanding the availability of cards made from recycled materials globally with the goal of having the vast majority of plastic cards issued by American Express be made of at least 70% recycled or reclaimed plastic by the end of 2024.

Alongside this, an expanded Carbon Footprint Dashboard will also be available to American Express’ global Corporate clients, including those in the UK, to help track emissions associated with their employees’ travel and entertainment spend – across air travel, ground transportation, hotel stays, restaurants and retail purchases. This allows these businesses to better understand purchasing behaviours so they can find opportunities to manage carbon emissions.

The findings of our latest Trendex research clearly show that consumers expect businesses to step up when it comes to plans and policies around tackling climate change. The data also shows a significant opportunity for those companies that are acting on this critical issue, and the role they can play in helping to better inform their customers. At American Express, we’re proud to be helping back our business customers on this journey by offering them tools and insights to reduce their carbon emissions and promote more sustainable spending.

– Stacey Sterbenz, General Manager, Global Commercial Services UK , American Express


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