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Sustainable Packaging, Brand Sales, & Consumer Trends

January 26, 2015

In a new report by Stora Enso Packaging Solutions, studies show that brands that make the move to sustainable packaging will see an increase in product sales. The report attributes this to a whole generation of millennials growing up and making their own informed decisions as consumers.


Currently sustainable packaging is projected to increase a brands sales by 2-4%, but as more millennials become consumers this percentage will be going up. No matter what industry you are in, sustainability has been demonstrated to offer a competitive edge.

Sustainability is here to stay across all industries as consumers are becoming more aware of the environment and the small changes that we can make to help preserve it.

To the younger generations, packaging is seen as just as much of the brand experience as the merchandise itself. The report referenced above shows that 85% of millennials consider a product's packaging to be an important part of the brand experience, and 44% of them are willing to pay a little more for sustainable packaging.

The survey also indicated that 80% of millennials agree that product packaging weighs into their buying decisions when they are shopping at grocery stores. These numbers are all pretty telling of what the future of the packaging industry looks like.

Despite what you may have heard, sustainable packaging is also cost effective for brands because of how much they will cut down on packaging waste. In the past, the cost was something that many companies worried about since it was thought to be more expensive, but as more brands made the move to sustainable packaging, it became clear that it was actually cheaper in the long run.

Influencing Consumer Trends

Millennials make up about 1/3 (over 86 million people) of the global population, making them the largest generational group in history, and also the most diverse generational group. This generation is also more connected than any other in history because of the internet and social media, and they are changing everything when it comes to consumer trends.

Estimates have stated that the millennials currently account for $600 billion in annual spending, and by 2020 it is expected that 30% of all retail sales will be from the millennial generation.

This generation is also not shy about sharing their feelings on and offline about a brand, positive or negative. They recognize that they have a voice, and the right tools to amplify that voice.

These are very significant statistics to pay attention to for all businesses because the influence of the millennial generation is still developing, and they will cause a direct impact as consumers for many years to come. 

If your company has not already started looking into making a change to sustainable packaging for all of your brands products, then now is the time!

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