Well Meaning and Meaning Well: Gifting With A Bigger Impact
U.S. consumers shop with a vengeance. Will 2016 be the year consumers also shop with a purpose? Meet some of the companies making it easier to make eco-friendly and sustainable purchases.
Gifts have been exchanged, returned and donated. Sales racks scoured. But what happened to that resolution to be more eco-conscious and sustainable, it always seems to go sideways in the frenzy of holiday shopping or impulse purchases on Hallmark holidays (check the calendar: Valentine’s Day is around the corner). As concerned as we are about the planet (according to the Pew Research Center, nearly three-quarters of Americans see global climate change as a “very serious” (45%) or “somewhat serious” (29%) threat, and two-thirds (66%) say people will have to make major changes in the way they live to reduce the effects of climate change), we just can’t stop shopping. Holiday sales in 2015 increased 3 percent to $626.1 billion — a solid performance given the uncertainty in the global economy.
Retail has — and will — continue to play an important role in growing the U.S. economy, but what if our pocket books aligned with our attitudes too? Millennials — aka 18 to 34 year-olds — are the largest generation in the American workforce today. They pack a whole lot of consumer punch and survey after survey indicates they are interested in products with an impact and/or products that are responsibly made. But will they buy it — and truly shift the retail production and marketing landscape?
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