According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), a proliferation of food label claims over the past three decades has led to misinformation and confusion among consumers. And as competition has increased among food manufacturers, labels have become advertising space for product attributes with little substance. For example, the USDA Organic seal is often confused with other label claims, such as “natural” or “raised without antibiotics” that have fewer and/or lower standards and lower production costs.
Conscious consumers have caught on and are now looking beyond labels when trying to ascertain a brand's environmental and ethical stewardship. Our study found that all generations were interested in understanding the story behind the product and they’re willing to pay for increased transparency.
Among Baby Boomers, only 28 percent research every purchase, the majority (44 percent) focused
on only the important buys.
Our survey found no real differences in the value systems across generations. Among those we surveyed, all agreed that companies must protect their privacy, their health and their communities in order to gain their trust.
Is your organization prepared for the Conscious Consumer?
The introduction of the European Union’s (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in 2018 heightened the minimum standard of data privacy resulting in a significant ripple effect across all industries and regions. While the U.S. has been slow to adopt similar regulation, the EU’s broad reading of consumer data privacy rights is giving consumers more visibility and control over how their data is collected and used.
Looking Beyond Labels
Across the board, 65 percent viewed data privacy as the most important attribute when considering a company’s trustworthiness.
Among those surveyed, 75 percent would accept a lower quality product for increased data protection. They would also pay more for a product or service if data privacy was guaranteed.
SAI Global commissioned Survata to conduct this survey on consumer trust. Survata interviewed 4,691 online respondents who were 18+ years old between Oct. 22-26, 2018. The study was sampled within six major global regions: Europe, Asia, North America, Middle East, Africa and the Oceania. The margin of error for this study at a 95% confidence level is 1.4%.
companies for all purchases
Consumers are holding companies to much higher standards
Integrated risk management
to advance confidently
Globally, consumers are increasingly skeptical of labels alone and are validating them with peers and other credible sources.
Consumer trust when it comes to food labeling is on the decline, with consumers trusting "Fair Trade" distinction over organic and farm accreditation schemes.
The average global cost of a data breach is estimated at US$3.86 billion. Food recalls in the U.S. cost companies an average of US$10 million in direct costs alone, according to a widely cited study by the Grocery Manufacturers Association and the Food Marketing Institute. And when it comes to food violations, a 2015 study by Ohio State University estimates the annual costs top US$55 billion in medical treatment, lost productivity and illness-related deaths. There’s no denying how expensive mistakes and missteps can be for brands.
At SAI Global, we help organizations proactively manage risk to achieve business excellence, growth, sustainability and ultimately, create trust.
Our integrated risk management solutions are a combination of world-class tech platforms, services and advisory capabilities that operate across the entire lifecycle allowing businesses to focus on opportunities presented by uncertainty. Together, these tools and knowledge enable customers to develop a holistic, integrated view of risk. In Australia, we are also a leading provider of settlement related services; company, personal and property information.
SAI Global Limited’s head office is located in Sydney, Australia. We employ more than 2,000 people across 28 countries and 51 locations across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the Americas, Asia and the Pacific.
To find out more visit www.saiglobal.com
When it comes to data protection, 78 percent of consumers said they were more likely to purchase a more expensive product if privacy was assured.
Similarly, 71 percent of consumers would pay more for a product that comes from a company with a thorough quality assurance process.
User-generated product reviews
Consumers will spend more for peace of mind and values
Share your perspectives on trust and reputation. Do you agree with the consumers we surveyed? #saiTRUSTindex
Interestingly, consumers weren’t interested in the run-of-the-mill apology that includes some kind of financial repercussion either in the way of fines or discounts to customers.
Download the 2019 Reputation Trust Index Executive Summary; a barometer report on global consumer trust and brand reputations. What do you need to know about the conscious consumer?
The survey found that 64 percent of consumers would buy a more expensive product if it had no carbon footprint versus 36 percent who were motivated solely by cost.
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In partnership with Survata, SAI Global conducted
our second annual global survey into consumer perceptions of brands, values, and the positive or negative impact your company’s security, risk and compliance actions have on trust and reputation.
Why do consumers choose to abandon certain brands, and – more importantly – what can you do to strengthen your risk posture and connection to conscious consumer to protect your company’s reputation? Below are our insights into trust and brand resilience.
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There's no generational divide when it comes to trust and transparency
Would accept a lower quality
product for increased data protection
The company crisis people across the globe are most concerned about, regardless of age, is a financial service data breach.
Food safety violations in groceries or food establishments follow close behind.
The Fair Trade and organic labels held more weight in the Middle East with 50 percent of consumers polled saying they considered those third-party standards when making a buying decision. In other regions, the numbers were dramatically lower with just 27 percent of consumers in North America and 20 percent of those in Europe saying they considered an organic label trustworthy.
The GDPR Effect
Learn how we've helped companies like yours with an integrated approach to risk management so you can minimize threats and maximize opportunities across all levels of your enterprise.
Meaning Over Money
Media and third-party
Join the conversation
Data privacy remains a top concern
In fact, our survey found no real differences in the value systems across generations. Among those we surveyed, all agreed that companies must protect their privacy, their health and their communities in order to gain their trust.
Consumers Are Looking Beyond Labels for Peer Validation
While consumers are somewhat understanding when mistakes happen, more than half of those surveyed agreed that taking responsibility for errors was an important CSR value.
research every purchase
60 percent of those surveyed wanted companies to take public responsibility via
a statement versus 26 percent citing a fine
About SAI Global
Last year, in a blog post on the eve of
GDPR taking effect, we asked whether
the protection of personal data was a fundamental human right.
Consumers are willing to pay more to support sustainability, evidenced by the popularity of brands such as Patagonia, TOMS, Ella’s Kitchen and Newman’s Own. It’s not just sustainability. Consumers are also willing to pay more for human rights and data protection. They want to feel that their purchasing decisions align with their personal values and that what they’re buying is good for the world and the people in it.
Viewed data privacy as a company's most important attribute
If you think Millennials are the only generation socially energized and likely to care about brands taking a stand, think again. According to the findings of our Trust Index, there is now an even spread among demographics.
Our survey found that the groups are more alike than their caricatures. Millennials, GenXers and Baby Boomers access the same research sources and use similar vetting methods when it comes to the companies they choose to do business with.
The difference lies in frequency as 44 percent of millennials we surveyed said they research companies for all purchases. Among Baby Boomers, only 28 percent research every purchase.
In an environment where the conscious consumer has become mainstream, trust in business is paramount. Still, there is a gap between what consumers expect and what business leaders think is necessary. Learn more by reading our Executive Summary report.