Tetra Pak research shows growing demand for renewable materials

Tetra Pak has released the findings of its 5th bi-annual environment survey, highlighting a rising demand for renewable materials and environmental labelling among consumers worldwide. The report also shows that recycling remains a fundamental expectation of both consumers and food industry stakeholders. 

This year’s survey sees a significant rise in the attitude towards renewable materials among food industry stakeholders, driven by the recent development of new technologies. They rank the use of bio-based materials as one of the most important environmental trends shaping the future of beverage packaging.

Meanwhile, consumers continue to rate carton the most ‘environmentally friendly’ packaging type due to the use of paper as a renewable material and more than 50% of them believe that the use of bio-based plastic will further improve the environmental performance of carton packaging.

The report identifies a growing consumer demand for more environmental information. In order to make informed choices 37% of consumers regularly search for environmental logos on food packaging. Today 54% of consumers trust environmental labels compared with 37% in 2011. One in five consumers in the survey recognise the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) logo with most able to associate it with sustainable forestry.

Sorting and setting aside packaging for recycling remains the number one environmental activity among consumers as it has been since 2005. Meanwhile, the ability to recycle packaging material is regarded as a top priority among food industry stakeholders when developing a product or a service.

“The findings of this year’s report reinforce the importance of putting environment at the heart of our strategic agenda,” says Dennis Jönsson, Tetra Pak president and CEO. “We have set firm commitments to reduce our environmental footprint across the value chain, to develop sustainable products and to increase recycling rates; and we are making good progress towards the goals that we have set for ourselves in each of these important areas.” The survey has been conducted every two years since 2005. The 2013 Environmental Research polled over 7000 consumers and more than 200 food industry stakeholders in 13 countries including the USA, Brazil, UK, France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, South Africa, Turkey, India, Russia, China and Japan. Tetra Pak uses this survey in order to gain a 360° understanding of attitudes about the environment and packaging, helping to secure a solid basis for environmental communication and ultimately to guide its future strategy and product development. This year’s survey was conducted in partnership with Firefly Millward Brown.