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Dec 18, 2018 / Richard Hall

Public perceptions of packaging

How extraordinary. We may care more. But we may also misunderstand more.

A survey of 7,000 people across 7 European countries, commissioned by Pro Carton, came up with some remarkable findings.

The first is that people care a lot more about packaging than they did.

  • 68% said being environment friendly has become more important to them and their family over the past 5 years.
  • 74% said media coverage on packaging waste had influenced their purchasing habits.
  • 75% said the environmental impact of packaging affects their purchasing decisions.
  • 77% said they would pay more for packaging with less impact on the environment.
  • 90% want on-pack labelling about packaging’s environmental status.

The second is that substantial, but lower, numbers are more seriously interested in action that would affect them directly.

  • 58% said they would accept a tax to force the adoption of more environment friendly packaging.
  • 52% said they had switched brands or products because of packaging concerns, even though a much higher
  • 81% would prefer the same product in cardboard instead of plastic.

The most challenging, but not altogether surprising, findings were the strength of feeling in favour of cartons compared with all other packaging materials.

I’m sure the answers would have been different if the word ‘tin’ had been replaced by ‘aluminium/steel cans’. The plastic industry must clearly work hard to regain public support.

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