Canadians prefer to shop from companies with circular economy initiatives: Study

In addition to other findings, a number of consumers surveyed would like to support businesses that actively reduce food waste
reusable grocery bags

More Canadians are favouring companies with active circular economy measures in place, according to a new study from Capterra.

The online marketplace vendor surveyed more than 1,000 Canadian consumers about their participation in sustainable consumerism and the circular economy.

A majority of respondents (87%) prefer to buy products from companies with circular economy initiatives, such as buy-back programs.

While 88% stated in the survey that they 'actively care' about extending the life cycle of their products, only 8% routinely participate in such programs.

Consumers’ most common sustainable habits included separating recycling from normal waste (79%) and using reusable grocery bags (78%).

Notably, 30% of respondents reported that they would like to support businesses that actively reduce food waste.

When it comes to buying behaviours, Canadians are split on whether they'd be willing to pay more to support a circular economy. Just 20% buy local or “kilometer-zero” products regularly, and only 13% always prioritize buying second-hand products (63% report buying second-hand products sometimes, and 79% have sold their used items at least once). 

"The onus cannot fall entirely on the consumer. Of course, consumers can't participate in programs that don't exist or they're unaware of," Tessa Anaya, analyst for this study, said in a statement. "Businesses wishing to appeal to sustainable-minded consumers should not only invest in trade-in programs, locally-sourced products/supplies, and eco-friendly manufacturing processes, but also aim to be as transparent as possible about these changes in marketing efforts."

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