Retailers need to provide proof of sustainability claims as shoppers “no longer willing to take them at face value”

Fashion retailers claiming to prioritise sustainability will have to start providing evidence to convince consumers who are “no longer willing to take green efforts at face value”.

According to leading data and analytics company GlobalData, consumers increasingly “want proof” from retailers making green claims.

GlobalData’s research suggests that customers are increasingly interested in brands championing circular and sustainable initiatives, with the number of shoppers stating these brands were most appealing rising 25 per cent over the past year.

However data from Compare Ethics suggested that a third of customers would now doubt a brands claims, with a further third actively researching a brands claims to see if they are legitimate.

READ MORE: Zalando to make sustainability assessment mandatory for all sellers in landmark move

“It’s no longer enough to say we source our cotton sustainably, or the production of our jeans uses three times less water than conventional methods,” GlobalData’s apparel analyst Hannah Abdulla said.

“Today’s savvy consumer demands to know how that’s been measured and by who. It is more important than ever before that brands affiliate themselves with reputable, third-party firms that can provide that data.

“Data-rich programmes that allow the presentation of green efforts to consumers in a way that is backed up by evidence must quickly be embraced by brands, because greenwashing is going out of fashion at a record pace.”

Higg, a sustainability technology company, recently launched its Open Data Portal allowing customers to access the actual data behind social and environmental sustainability claims by the world’s biggest retailers.

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