'Attenborough Effect' May Be Responsible For Drop In Single-Use Plastic

A new survey suggests David Attenborough's documentaries on climate change are having a major impact on consumers
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Sir David Attenborough may be responsible for the significant drop in single-use plastic, in what has been dubbed as the 'Attenborough effect'.

According to the Market researcher GlobalWebIndex, 53 percent of participants say they've reduced their use of disposable plastic in the last year.

The report, which surveyed 3,833 people, has described David Attenborough's TV series Blue Planet II and Our Planet as a 'key influencer' in the increased awareness around plastic.

In the UK, more than 80 percent of respondents who said they valued sustainable packaging were also concerned about the environment's future.

Generational Divide

63 percent of 16-24-year-olds saw affordability as a barrier when it comes to plastic-free products - 20 percent lower than those aged between 55-64.

Chase Buckle, Trends Manager at GlobalWebIndex, said: "It may come as a shock to some that the younger consumers are more considerate about sustainable materials than older generations.

What is important to note, is that the younger generations grew up during the height of the sustainability crisis with high-profile, environmentalist documentaries widely available on the content platforms they prefer over conventional TV."

'Sustainability isn't just another buzzword'

In the UK, 82 percent of participants considered it 'important' to purchase products with sustainable packaging in order to be less wasteful.

"There is an opportunity for brands to capitalize on consumer perceptions surrounding sustainable packaging of products," Buckle said.

"Managing these different pressures is no small hurdle for manufacturers and brands to overcome. Sustainability isn't just another buzzword. Consumers genuinely care, and they're expecting more from brands than ever before thanks to social media reinforcing a culture of accountability among businesses."