Sustainability Predictions for 2022
Nick Oettinger, CEO and founder of TFR Group supports and advises retailers and organisations on how to best achieve authentic, long term sustainability targets through innovation and simple environmentally friendly business practices.
Over the past 18 months, many retailers and organisations’ main focus has been protecting staff, stakeholders and customers during a global pandemic and remaining financially stable during such uncertainty. This has led to the green agenda taking a back seat for many businesses, with reports finding that 55% of businesses were forced to pause or cancel investment into sustainability during the pandemic.
Looking ahead to 2022, once organisations have financially recovered from the impacts of Covid-19, many will get back to pre-pandemic goals including setting clear targets for sustainability and strategies to achieve these.
However, environmental changes may take longer to implement for many businesses as the economy recovers and many sectors get to grips with the realities of Brexit.
Conscious consumer demand grows
The demand for more environmentally friendly brands and businesses is growing. Nearly two thirds (62%) of customers say it’s more important than before the pandemic that companies behave in a more sustainable and eco-friendly way, while searches for sustainable shopping have increased by over 600% year on year. In 2022 consumers will be more informed, educated and aware than ever before and are demanding to spend their money with truly sustainable brands. This will drive change amongst many consumer-facing businesses, as they begin to invest in more environmentally friendly practices, rather than lose market share over greener competitors.
Introducing ‘green tech’
Introducing innovative technology into businesses is a great way of reducing emissions, saving costs long term and appealing to the digital savvy consumer. Businesses may take 2022 as an opportunity to introduce more technology into the day to day running of their companies to help achieve their sustainability goals. Using electric vehicles like Amazon and UPS or reducing paper waste with apps are just some of the ways brands will adapt in the year to come.
Changing the infrastructure of a business to become more sustainable takes a long term investment of time and money to ensure that the company is still profitable, while making an authentic pledge to be more environmentally friendly. While companies look into their own strategies a simpler way that can achieve quick results both for the brand and the environment is carbon offsetting. This is where a business offsets their carbon footprint by planting trees or investing in sustainable ventures. As many businesses will use 2022 to recover from the pandemic, carbon offsetting will become the norm, allowing companies to contribute in a way that minimises disruption to their business during a critical time.
Already popular in the US, climate positivity sees brands not only become net zero but take one step further by removing more additional CO2 from the environment than they produce. Global brands including Burberry have pledged to become climate positive by 2040 and many more brands are set to follow in 2022.
Climate neutral certifications
Over the past few years businesses have flocked to have their products officially certified by leading bodies, including Made in Britain, Vegan, Vegetarian, Cruelty Free, Hypoallergenic and Organic. Moving into 2022 many businesses will look at certifications that showcase their green credentials including the British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) Climate Action Roadmap, 100% Recycled Materials and the Carbon Trust’s PAS 2060 certification.
Many organisations and retail businesses rely heavily on landfill for their waste, but figures show that landfill sites could burst their banks as early as next year.
There are sustainable waste solutions – introducing TFR Group. We partner with retailers such as John Lewis to offer the rejuvenation and recycling of mattresses. This allows retailers to divert their goods away from landfill, supporting sustainable solutions, while protecting profit margins on returned mattresses.
If you’re looking to strengthen your sustainability practices in 2022, contact Nick at firstname.lastname@example.org