Price no deterrent for ethics

fairtradeGlobally, people are willing to pay more for products and services from companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact, a survey by Nielsen has found.

On average, 55 per cent of consumers said they were prepared to pay more – a five per cent rise on a year ago and an increase of 10 per cent since 2011.

“This survey reflects the experience of Fairtrade, the world’s most recognised ethical label,” said Molly Harriss Olson, CEO of Fairtrade Australia and New Zealand.

“Globally, the Fairtrade market grew by 15 per cent in 2013, with consumer sales hitting €5.5 billion,” said Harriss Olson.

The study found 64 per cent of consumers in Asia Pacific compared to 40 per cent in Europe are willing to pay more for products from companies with a positive social and environmental impact.

In 2013, retail sales of Fairtrade Certified products such as coffee, tea, and chocolate grew by 11 per cent in Australia and New Zealand, totalling $259.3 million.

“Australia has a key role to play in scaling up the market in Asia Pacific,” Harriss Olson said.

The greatest response to sustainability actions came from Millennials, those aged 21- to 34, who represent 51 per cent of those who will pay extra for sustainable products.

Only 25 per cent of Generation X and 12 per cent of Baby Boomers claimed to do the same.

“This is very positive news, as over the next 30 years, these young people will become their nation’s decision makers.”

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