Apac consumers willing to pay a premium for sustainable products, research finds

Kaycee Enerva

Kaycee Enerva

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Nine in 10 consumers across Asia-Pacific (Apac) say they are willing to spend more to buy sustainable products, according to research from global consultancy group Bain & Company.   

Among 16,000 surveyed, half (51 per cent) considered sustainable products are for better health, while 14 per cent prefer to purchase products because they are good for the planet.

Consumers surveyed in the region’s fast-growing markets (China, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and the Philippines) are shown to be more conscious of environmental factors than those in the mature market segments (Australia, Japan, Singapore, and South Korea).

The study also revealed that 40 per cent of consumers plan to increase their spending on sustainable products during the next three years. 

“It’s fantastic to see consumers across Asia-Pacific demonstrating enthusiasm and demand for sustainable products, showcasing the vast opportunity brands have in front of them,” said David Zehner, partner and head at Apac at Bain & Company.

However, despite the intent, consumers reported their actions fall short because of a lack of suitable information, product availability, transparency and trust issues – often due to false sustainability claims (greenwashing).

Zara Lightowler, co-author of the report and associate partner at Brain & Company, stated that it’s up to the brands to listen, react, and lead by strengthening their ESG Initiatives (Environment, Social, and Governance) to connect with consumers.

“Brands can bridge that gap by helping to educate consumers, improve availability and options, and drive clearer, consistent information across all touchpoints,” Zehner added.

Further reading: Exclusive: Equo founder explains her mission to change consumer habits through sustainable products

Kaycee Enerva

Kaycee Enerva

A digital content manager based in the Philippines, Kaycee Enerva has written for multiple publications over several years. A graduate of Computer Science, she exchanged a career in IT to pursue her passion for writing. She's slowly practicing sustainability through period cups, and eating more plant-based food.