February 23, 2022

While personal goals and priorities can change from shopper to shopper, one thing that food retailers can bet on is that helping the community and environment is universally seen as a good thing. Today’s shoppers are not only concerned with their personal environmental impact, but also the impact of the stores they frequent. These shopper concerns can present an opportunity for food retailers to make positive operational changes that can in turn affect their bottom lines.

Sustainability and Food Retailing, the newest study from the Coca‑Cola Retailing Research Council of North America, identified many social issues that are current concerns for shoppers, which translate into their sustainability goals and priorities. Shoppers seek to implement what they have been taught will have a positive environmental impact, such as recycling and limiting food waste. Shopping with reusable bags, supporting local non-profits and using other reusable items also rank among the most important ways shoppers choose to practice sustainability.

While food retailers may wonder about ROI when implementing these sustainability efforts, shoppers indicate that they will travel farther to stores that share their values. Shoppers are willing to drive up to 10.9 minutes out of their way to a food retailer that they believe to have a strong sustainable impact. They are also willing to pay an average of 4% more at a food retailer that implements initiatives that support their community and the environment.

As food retailers become more inclined to increase their own sustainability efforts, there is growing reason to believe that shoppers are prepared to support them with increasing loyalty and store patronage. By demonstrating that a store is aligned with shopper values, food retailers strengthen their role as an integral part of the community they serve.

For more information on the sustainability goals of shoppers, download the report for free: