How Consumer Demand Can Make A Difference


Just when you start thinking that your choices as a consumer don’t make a difference.

Think again!

Have a look at these five changes made by large corporations due to public demand.

1. John West
John West pledged that by 2015 they will not be sourcing any tuna from fisheries who use fishing methods that are proven to be unsustainable and will only sell tuna caught using environmentally responsible methods.

Read more here.

See other companies that have made the switch or plan to make the switch to sustainable fishing practices.

2. Nestle
Nestle has pledged to use certified sustainable palm oil only throughout their entire range of food by 2015 and to also openly label products that contain said palm oil.

Read more here.

3. Mattel
In 2011 Mattel made changes to their packaging and began instructing its suppliers to avoid wood fibre from controversial sources, including companies ‘that are known to be involved in deforestation’. Their policy also aims to increase the amount of recycled paper used in their business, as well as to boost the use of wood products certified by the Forest Stewardship Council

Read more here.

4. Cadbury
In 2009 Cadbury was met with a barrage of complaints when they exchanged cocoa butter for palm oil in their chocolate range and were forced to change back to their original recipe. In the same year Cadbury announced plans to achieve Fairtrade Certification for their Dairy Milk chocolate.

Read more here and here.

5. McDonalds
McDonalds announced this year plans to begin purchasing verifiable sustainable beef by 2016. While I do think McDonalds have missed the point a little on this one I don’t disagree that this will be a game changer for the beef industry and have other companies follow in a similar direction.

Read more here.

While some of these companies pledges are still in the planning stages let’s hope they carry through with action and at the very least get their competitors thinking in the same sustainable way.

The trick for us as consumers is to remember that producers switching to more sustainable options is not a fix-all for the environment. It is up to us to consume products at a sustainable rate.

Basically, just because a Kit Kat might use sustainable palm oil it doesn’t mean you can eat two.

Do you think consumers hold power in making change?

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