Monday, 18 February 2008

*Animal Welfare is top concern

Animal welfare and fair trade are far bigger concerns to UK consumers than climate change, according to a huge new poll of UK shoppers.

Only 4% rate climate change as their top ethical priority, compared with 21% who think animal welfare is the most important issue and 14% who rate fair trade as their key concern.

The findings come from a survey conducted by the Co-op that has been used to draw up a "responsible retailing" policy, designed to reflect shoppers' concerns. The Co-op claims the survey is the biggest poll of consumer ethics ever undertaken.

The supermarket group analysed responses to a detailed, 4-page questionnaire from more than 100,000 members and customers. It intends to use their responses to guide changes to the way it does business. As a result of the survey the Co-op is halting the sale and use of eggs from caged hens with immediate effect. The 2,700-strong supermarket chain is also ensuring all its own-brand tea - including its 99 brand - becomes fair trade.

The customer-owned business, which made all of its coffee fair trade 5 years ago, intends to absorb the extra costs so that prices do not go up. 3 main categories emerged from the survey as the key areas of concern: ethical trading (27%), animal welfare (25%) and environmental impact (22%).

Some 4% pinpointed animal testing as the ethical issue they believe is the most important facing consumers - the same proportion as want more attention paid to climate change.

No comments: