Majority of Americans are Purchasing, Thinking About Plant-based Products
New research shows that in addition to strong interest in plant-based products, consumers are more favorable towards companies, farmers, and policymakers who are involved in sustainable initiatives
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 26, 2022 – The Plant Based Products Council (PBPC) today released the findings from its annual consumer research program, revealing trends in consumer attitudes and awareness of products made from renewable inputs like corn, soy, and hemp. This year’s report showed strong interest in plant-based products and illustrated how the industry continues to expand its footprint in American retail and homes – with 71% of consumers reporting they consciously think about products and packaging made from plant-based materials when they shop.
“This year’s consumer research findings really underscore that the majority of American consumers are thinking about, buying, and using plant-based products,” says PBPC Executive Director Jessica Bowman. “Awareness has been one of our biggest hurdles as an industry – this year’s findings show that we are overcoming that. We expect consumers’ growing demand to continue and PBPC is focused on ensuring our state and federal-level policies allow the plant-based products industry to tap into its full potential and meet that demand.”
Nearly nine in 10 consumers are planning on purchasing a plant-based product in the near future, and consumers are more likely to think highly of stakeholders who make, utilize, or support the industry:
- 88% of consumers said they are likely to purchase products and materials made from plants in the next three months.
- 71% of consumers said they consciously think about products and packaging made from plant-based materials when they are shopping.
- Only 5% of consumers who have purchased products and materials made from plants said they are not interested in purchasing again.
- 61% of consumers said they would be more interested in a company if they were using products and materials made from plants.
Of the types of plant-based products currently on the market:
- 87% of consumers are interested in purchasing disposable food service ware
- 86% of consumers are interested in purchasing household textiles (towels, sheets, etc.)
- 85% of consumers are interested in purchasing personal care products (lotions, cosmetics, etc.)
- 84% of consumers are interested in purchasing single-use plastic bags
- 84% of consumers are interested in purchasing clothing
“The majority of consumers are concerned about the environmental impact of the products they buy,” says Brett Featherston, global vice president of sales of PBPC member Evanesce. “They expect businesses to offer sustainable alternatives to products that are well-known to be harmful to the environment – and in many cases are willing to pay more for that sustainable product. At Evanesce, we are proud to offer locally-made compostable service ware and packaging that makes it easy and affordable to be eco-friendly.”
After learning that farmers and those in the agriculture industry are making it possible to produce products and materials made from plants, 69% of consumers said they feel more favorable towards farmers and those in the ag industry.
“Iowa Corn is dedicated to finding new uses and markets for corn to meet our mission for long-term Iowa corn farmer profitability,” says Stan Nelson, farmer and District 9 representative of PBPC member Iowa Corn Promotion Board. “Corn farmers effectively produce corn in a sustainable way, and the next step is to gain market access and grow demand for new plant-based products. Plant-based products provide consumers with the green materials they are looking for while creating demand for home-grown products from rural America.”
According to the 2022 findings, consumers cited recyclability, composability, and the environment as the top reasons for purchasing a plant-based product. At the same time, 21% of consumers reported inaccessible waste disposal infrastructure as a top factor when deciding not to purchase these types of products. As major legislation like the Farm Bill and the 2022 midterms approach, 66% of consumers said they are more likely to vote for a candidate who has shown support for sustainability initiatives around energy, agriculture, waste, alternatives to plastic, clean air, clean water, and/or the environment.
The 2022 PBPC Consumer Research study was conducted by Heart+Mind Strategies and included both a quantitative and qualitative component. A nationally representative sample of 1,000 U.S. consumers responded to an online survey fielded from April to May 2022.
View the Results
View the public results of the 2022 research study here. The full results of the study are accessible only to PBPC members. For more information about PBPC membership, please reach out directly to email@example.com.
PBPC is an association of like-minded organizations who are advocating for a shift toward a more circular bioeconomy through greater adoption of renewable, plant-based materials supported by appropriate end-of-life infrastructure. We educate stakeholders and advocate for programs and policies that will support growth of the plant-based products industry, helping to harness its environmental and economic potential to deliver a more sustainable future.
Learn more at www.pbpc.com.