A study of 2,000 adults found 61 percent used reusable bags when shopping over the last 12 months with the same number making more of an effort to turn off lights when leaving a room. More than half (51 percent) hang laundry outside to dry – weather permitting – rather than using the tumble drier in a bid to be more eco-friendly. Others have used resealable food packaging, a cloth, instead of paper towels, and bar soaps, rather than liquid bottles.
Nearly half of those polled (49 percent) want to make significant changes to make a difference and 40 percent believe they are making better decisions to live more sustainably due to the wealth of information available.
But the study, commissioned to launch the Cadbury Cocoa Life Sofa Sessions, found a quarter of adults believe the number of sustainability messages they see is causing confusion.
And the average adult hears 21 competing things a week from podcasts, social media, adverts and packaging.
Behavioural Psychologist Jo Hemmings, who is working with Cadbury Cocoa Life, said: “I’m not surprised that people feel confused and uncertain about what they can do to have impact.
“With the plethora of messaging around sustainability out there, it’s so important for organisations and brands to clearly inform consumers of the measures they put in place to help drive impact.
“The final yet vital piece of the puzzle is that consumers find a straightforward and easy way to incorporate these’ power ups’ into their everyday lives – levelling up their efforts to make the maximum positive impact.”
The study also found half of those polled are often confused by the mixed messages they receive around sustainability due to conflicting arguments and opinions with friends.
Key sources of inspiration to help better their understanding in protecting the planet include watching TV documentaries (41 percent), listening to family (20 percent), viewing social media (18 percent) and reading newspapers and magazines (16 percent).
However, while they understand the impact their purchases can make, only one in five adults are taking the time to look at the meaning of third-party logos and certification when choosing what to buy.
Just 16 percent buy sustainably sourced tea and coffee, only 14 percent look for eco-friendly materials when buying clothes and just over one in 10 (13 percent) choose biodegradable facewipes.
And only 12 percent of those polled via OnePoll buy sustainable sourced chocolate.
But simple actions that can have a large, long-term impact on the environment – such as looking out for Fair Wear list of suppliers and purchasing denim from a brand which offers to repair to extend the life – are overlooked in favour of less impactful actions like turning off your lights when leaving a room or line drying your laundry.
The Cadbury Cocoa Life Sofa Sessions, supported by television presenter Alex Jones, have been created to ‘lift the lid’ on the world of sustainability and help Britons make simple sustainable choices that can truly land an impact in the long term.
Alex Jones said: “I’m leading the Cadbury Sofa Sessions this month where I’ll be uncovering what simple sustainable actions people can take every day to reduce their impact on the planet.
“There are so many simple things that brands are already doing that we didn’t even realise were making a difference on a daily basis.”
Cathy Pieters, senior director for Cocoa Life at Mondelēz, said: “It’s heartening to hear how much people care about making a positive impact and at Cadbury we’re delighted to let people know that we’ve been giving them a little ‘power up’ in their sustainability efforts that they didn’t even know about.
“Cadbury products support 100 percent sustainability sourced Cocoa via the Cocoa Life Programme.’
“When you buy any bar of Cadbury, you can have confidence that the brand is making a difference by ensuring cocoa farmers can earn a better living for their families and communities, helping children improve their education and empowering women – all with one bar of Cadbury chocolate.”
TOP 20 ACTIONS BRITONS HAVE DONE TO LIVE MORE SUSTAINABLY
1. Taking a reusable bag to supermarkets
2. Turn off your lights when you leave the room
3. Line dry your laundry
4. Turn off your devices at night
5. Change to LED light bulbs
6. Purchasing loose and unwrapped fruit and vegetables
7. Use resealable food packaging
8. Use cloths instead of paper towels.
9. Use bar soaps instead of liquid bottles
10. Use recycled paper for writing to take notes
11. Washing laundry in cold temperatures
12. Make a weekly meal plan
13. Reduce meat consumption
14. Use dishwashers instead of handwashing
15. Use double-sided printing
16. Switch/consider switching to a water meter
17. Use recycled loo roll
18. Look for sustainability logos on products while shopping
19. Taking a reusable coffee cup to cafes
20. Buy sustainably sourced coffee and tea
SIX UNDERATED ACTIONS WHICH BRITONS CAN DO TO ‘POWER UP’ THEIR SUSTAINABLE LIFESTYLE
1. Buy sustainably sourced chocolate
2. Put up a no junk mail sign on your letterbox
3. Use sustainable sanitary products
4. Green banking
5. Look out for Fair Wear list of suppliers
6. Purchase denim from a brand which offers to repair to extend the life