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Discussion theme 6 - Sustainability and green marketing initiatives will need to be addressed as influences (e.g. government mandates, consumer awareness, competitor actions, etc.) converge and heighten in voice.

Converging influences, such as consumer awareness, pressure on commodity and energy prices, together with regulator and competitor actions are combining to ensure businesses cannot ignore the environmental and social dimensions of how they operate. Our primary research interviews suggest that green marketing and other sustainability practices are in the initial stages of being incorporated into modern trade. Three major sustainability issues facing retailers now are—

  • Climate change—The measurement of retailers’ carbon footprints and those of their products is seen as an important step in enabling retailers to understand and mitigate their impacts on climate change.

  • Waste—There is a widespread call for reducing the overall amount of packaging, more guidance on recycling and more education and emphasis on re-use.

  • Supply chain—Ensuring security of supply is considered to be a goal which can be compatible with social compliance and also something that retailers can work on together. Responsible procurement brings with it many issues for retailers and these are perceived to become more pressing as environmental pressures become increasingly felt.

Primary case examples

  • Sustainable Design at Inorbit Mall

  • Levi Strauss and Co.’s Product Sourcing and Sustainability Practices

  • Max Hypermarket’s Sustainable Sourcing and Procurement Practices

  • Swarovski’s Water Schools

PricewaterhouseCoopers

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