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Contributed by The Ashkin Group

An April 2022 study finds that retailers and brands that promote their sustainability efforts are finding it not only good for the environment - but good for business. The study was conducted by Sensormatic Solutions, a retail inventory technology company, a division of Johnson Controls. 

"One of the first things the survey pointed out is that the environment and sustainability are on the minds of consumers," says Steve Ashkin, president of The Ashkin Group and the professional cleaning industry's leading advocate for sustainability.

“In fact, 81 percent of the respondents said they were concerned or very concerned about sustainability and the environment's future."

Among the other findings in the study were the following:

  • Nearly 80 percent of U.S. consumers consider sustainability (of a product, the retailer, or the brand) when making at least some purchases.
  • Almost 80 percent of retailers believe their sustainability efforts pay off in increased customer loyalty.
  • 50 percent of consumers signal their concerns about sustainability are related to their concerns about the planet.
  • 54 percent of consumers read about a brand's sustainability initiatives.
  • The word "sustainability" has different meanings for different people. For most, it means reducing waste, recycling, using eco-friendly materials, cutting (greenhouse) gas emissions, and engaging in ethical labor practices. 
  • Half of the respondents believe businesses bear a responsibility to the consumer to operate sustainably.
  • 70 percent said they would change their shopping habits if they discovered that a store or brand wasn't operating sustainably.

"This last point is crucial," adds Ashkin. "We have thousands of companies making Green products. But are the companies making these products operating in a Green and sustainable manner? This is something consumers now want to know."