66% of Italians lead a more sustainable lifestyle since the beginning of the pandemic and 36% would be willing to spend more on green products. This is what emerges from the ‘The Green Response Survey 2021’ survey, conducted by Essity, a company active in the hygiene and health sectors, on the impact of the pandemic on our sustainable consumption behaviors.
There has been a moderate increase in the sensitivity of Italian consumers to issues relating to sustainability. The pandemic, in fact, would have directed consumers towards more sustainable choices, especially on plastic, packaging and recyclability. When buying hygiene products: 1 in 5 Italians pays attention to their environmental impact and 17% of Italians look for easily recyclable products. The propensity to spend (the so-called ‘willingness to pay’) for green and sustainable products also changes. In fact, Italians would agree to pay a higher price for products that can be recycled or composted after use (36%), made from renewable materials (31%) or from materials of natural origin (31%), with packaging made of recycled or renewable materials (29%) or locally made (27%).
Climate change is also among the interests of Italian consumers. In particular, optimism for the individual action of individuals increases. According to the Green Response conducted by Essity, in fact, Italians are among the most optimistic in the world when it comes to their positive impact on climate change: 70% believe that more environmentally friendly behaviors can slow down global warming, but not only. Since the start of the pandemic, 66% say they lead a more sustainable lifestyle.
However, there continues to be a gap between sustainable intentions and purchasing behaviors and lifestyles. So Essity will investigate the issue together with Legambiente which, starting from February 2022, will support the company in an information and awareness project on sustainable lifestyles in our daily life aimed at reducing this gap.
“In recent years, people’s sensitivity to environmental issues has grown at an unprecedented speed. The pandemic and the increasingly evident climate crisis have certainly accelerated this process. The challenge today is, therefore, to transform this growing attention into leading an increasing number of people to do their part. This process will help us improve our quality of life and protect the balance of the planet. Greater awareness in consumer choices is also a determining factor for the ecological transition of companies , pushing for the constant environmental improvement of products and services, and the solicitation of the institutions, in adopting more and more tools capable of accompanying this necessary change “, says Giorgio Zampetti, general manager of Legambiente.
“Not everyone is aware of the correct behaviors to adopt to be truly sustainable. Consumers’ ideas are very confused about it. Everyone has a sort of their own personal ‘green vademecum’ and does different things at their discretion. this confusion and arbitrariness explains many inconsistencies and also the gap between sustainable purchase intentions and effective behaviors. In this varied terrain of styles and beliefs, there is space to intervene and make the most of the green mindset of Italians. The idea is to implement a series of actions to speak to citizens, consumers and future generations by mobilizing the sensitivity already so present in our country, towards a concrete change made up of new sustainable behaviors “, says Massimo Minaudo, CEO of Essity Italia .