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Consumers want companies to get real

Over half of consumers in the UK and US want the fashion industry to become more sustainable. Consumers want fashion companies to reduce the amount of packaging, provide fair pay and good working conditions, use renewable and recyclable materials, make clothes that are designed to last longer and use fewer resources e.g. power, water, materials. Consumers in favor of greater sustainability also want retailers to clearly label clothes that are made in sustainable ways, offer discounts on clothing ranges that are more sustainable, do more to advertise and promote clothing that is made in sustainable ways, allow online shoppers to trade-in their used clothes for discounts on new items and automatically show people more sustainable alternatives to the items they are viewing online.

But only 29 per cent consumers are willing to pay more for sustainably-made versions of the same items. Despite many clothing manufacturers and retailers already taking steps to become more sustainable, the message is not getting through to the public. Of those that want a more sustainable fashion industry, 57 per cent say they try to keep clothes for longer because it’s better for the environment – among women this rises to 60 per cent, while it’s 52 per cent for men.