MANILA, PHILIPPINES – Kantar, the world’s leading data, insights, and consulting group, revealed that Filipino consumers are making significant strides towards becoming more responsible shoppers. In its recent report called Who Cares, Who Does, Kantar observed the important role brands and manufacturers play in sustainability , adding that 75% of Filipinos were actively seeking out brands that offer ways to offset their impact to the environment.
“Sustainability is an important topic and the pandemic has put an emphasis on the importance of health and wellness for consumers. Based on our research, there is huge potential for the Fast-Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) industry in the Philippines to apply more environmental practices as more Filipino shoppers are ready to embrace sustainable living and support eco-friendly brands,” Marie-Anne Lezoraine, General Manager, Worldpanel Division, Kantar Philippines said.
Data from its 2020 report showed that consumers are willing to support brands that invest in sustainable practices. In fact, 74% of Filipino households surveyed expressed willingness to invest and support brands that promote a sustainable lifestyle. But fulfilling a more sustainable lifestyle is not easy as more than half (55%) of Filipinos found it difficult to be environmentally-friendly because alternatives were either hard to find or more expensive. However, despite these challenges, many Filipinos also said they have witnessed a change in behavior among their friends and family in this aspect.
Preference for naturally, locally made products
According to Kantar, majority (92%) of Filipino shoppers preferred products made from natural ingredients, while 90% claimed that they are more inclined to purchase locally-made items. This was because they believed the products to be healthier and better for their overall wellbeing, and that it helped support the local economy and provided employment to their fellow Filipinos.
The desire to seek sustainable and healthier options stemmed from the Filipinos’ concern for their own health brought on by the pandemic.
Interestingly, having a sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle does not apply to affluent shoppers only, it is relevant to all Filipinos. In the Philippines, 54% of C2DE households were considered “eco-actives” or “eco-considerers”. This meant that households took consistent steps (eco-actives) or some actions (eco-considerers) to reduce their environmental impact. Kantar cited reusing cloth bags while shopping to reduce the level of plastic waste as a common example.
Key role of manufacturers, retailers
In the same report, Kantar listed availability, affordability and accessibility as barriers, adding that consumers expect manufacturers to help lead them toward sustainable living either through a wider array of eco-friendly options or in educating households. More than a third (36%) of Filipino households believe that manufacturers can make the biggest difference in the country’s battle against environmental damage.
“Nowadays, consumers are more aware and conscious of our environmental footprint. They recognize the vital role that manufacturers and retailers play in helping ensure that sustainable alternatives are available for all, including more affordable options for lower-income households. This presents an enormous opportunity for FMCG brands to lead and invest in eco-friendly practices in how they source, produce and manufacture products for Filipino homes,” Lezoraine said.