In recent years, consumer trust around environmental and ethical claims made by brands has lessened. FMCG Gurus consumer insights highlight that 38% of consumers have become less trusting of brands in the last two years. Consumers have become increasingly aware of the detrimental impact that brands and manufacturers have on the environment. Due to this, brands must continue to seek out ways to inform consumers of their policies and practices. An emerging technology to do this is blockchain technology.
Attitudes Towards Product Claims
FMCG Gurus consumer insights found that one third of global consumers are untrusting of food, drink and nutritional supplement brands. Consumers trust chocolate the least, with 38% of consumers untrusting of claims from chocolate brands. This suggests that consumers are lacking trust around ethical policies, such as fair trade.
FMCG Gurus consumer insights revealed that over half of consumers state that trust is important when buying food and drink. Trust is important for the consumer, because if they trust the brand, they are more likely to stay loyal to the brand. 50% of consumers associate brands that they trust with being of higher quality. Additionally, consumers value when brands justify higher prices by demonstrating their environmental and ethical credentials. As well as this, the story behind a product appeals to the consumer.
In recent years, consumer awareness towards the climate crisis has increased. Consumers are seeking out environmental claims to address this concern. Some examples of this include less plastic and reduced carbon footprint claims. However, many consumers are skeptical of these claims if they are not backed up by evidence. For instance, FMCG Gurus found that nearly one quarter of consumers do not trust environmental claims made by food companies.
FMCG Gurus consumer insights found that half of consumers favor when brands conduct research to ensure that their suppliers demonstrate ethical and environmental policies across their business. Our findings found that two thirds of consumers research these claims. For example, three quarters of consumers research into brands carbon footprint initiatives. Brands need to continue to seek out ways of communicating to consumers their ethical and environmental credentials.
54% of consumers believe that nutritional information on food and drink should be made simpler. This indicates that consumers are finding product labelling to be too complex, suggesting that it may not be wise to continue to crowd labels with more information on their products. An emerging alternative is the use of blockchain technology.
Blockchain is an innovative method of communicating clearly with consumers. It is a source of information that is centrally stored, allowing manufactures and brands to store all product information on a database that can be accessed by consumers. Blockchain can be used to store information on ethical practices such as the treatment of animals in the production process, factory information and transportation of products.
FMCG Gurus consumer insights show that only one in five consumers have heard of blockchain technology and of those, only one third had heard of it in relation to the food and drink industry. This demonstrates how blockchain is still an emerging technology in the eyes of the consumer.
Our consumer insights also found that one quarter of consumers find this idea of blockchain in the food industry appealing and two fifths would be more likely to buy from a brand if they registered information on a blockchain source. Of the consumers who claim that they would likely use such a database, the top information they would like to be able to access involves the carbon footprint emitted in the production process and commitments to ensure ethical and environmental certifications. With one third of consumers stating to have used their smartphone to scan a QR code on product packaging when purchasing food drink or nutritional supplements, this is something that brands could use to allow consumers access to a blockchain database.
This article is based on FMCG Gurus: Consumer Trust in 2022 – Global Report. For more information, please click here.