German consumers opt for sustainable products in times of inflation: GfK


German consumers continue to opt for sustainable products despite inflation and the impending energy crisis, a new survey has found.

The GfK sustainability indexreleased every three months, revealed that inflation is the biggest new concern for Germans, followed by climate change.

However, Italy and France rank above Germany in terms of sustainable purchases among other European countries.

Consumer Trends

In July, purchases based on sustainable development increased from 72% to 66% in Germany, with the change in consumer behavior impacting the food sector in particular.

In the first half of 2022, sales of organic products remained stable compared to the same period last year, while sales in the entire FMCG market decreased by 2.8%.

Currently, consumers prefer to buy organic products at lower prices from discounters or private labels, the study notes.

The percentage of consumers who plan to buy sustainably over the next four weeks decreased slightly, from 68% to 64%.

“People on low incomes, in particular, tend to hold back here. This has already been seen in the past month and is less surprising in the current circumstances,” said Petra Süptitz, sustainability and consumer insights expert at GfK. .

Willingness to pay more

The willingness to pay more for sustainable products remained almost constant (64% for everyday products) among certain groups of consumers who plan to continue to buy sustainably.

Süptitz added: “Sustainability is deeply rooted in German values. Many consumers are now looking for smart alternative strategies, especially when it comes to everyday products, so they can shop sustainably while saving money.

“Nevertheless, there are consumer groups such as Trend Surfers or Alphas who continue to focus on branded products and view sustainability as a lifestyle aspect that they associate with quality, enjoyment and convenience. Aesthetics Companies must ensure that their products and services meet these different needs.

Read more: German consumer sentiment plunges to new high: GfK

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