Topic 1 Commercial benefits

In 2020 NYU Stern School of Business Center for Sustainable Business and IRI® released the findings of a new U.S.-based study and established the Sustainable Share Index™, an in-depth analysis of consumer purchases of products that are marketed for their sustainable attributes — the research finds that these products are responsible for more than half of the growth in consumer packaged goods (CPGs) since 2013.

Sustainable Share Index Findings

The research conducted by the Center for Sustainable Business found that sustainability-marketed products delivered 50.1 percent of market growth from 2013-2018, while representing 16.6 percent of the CPG market in dollar sales in 2018. To conduct the research, Stern’s Center for Sustainable Business partnered with IRI, which contributed its comprehensive point-of-sale data on US consumer purchases. The Center analyzed data from across 36 product categories, representing approximately 40 percent of total CPG sales, excluding tobacco and alcohol.

Sustainable Share Index Findings – cont.

  • Across all categories, sustainability-marketed products delivered $113.9B in sales in 2018 — +29 percent vs. 2013 — and are expected to grow to $140.5B by 2023, based on an extrapolation of the analysis.
  • Products marketed as sustainable grew 5.6x faster than conventionally marketed products, and 3.3x faster than the CPG market.
  • In over 90 percent of individual product categories examined, the growth of sustainability-marketed products outpaced total category growth.
  • Sustainability-marketed products account for 16.6 percent share of market ($) in 2018, up from 14.3 percent in 2013.
  • Sustainable products have more than 20 percent category share in many food categories, including natural cheese, salty snacks and coffee.
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