Will Customers Pay More for ‘Green?’


From: Andrea Thomas, Senior Vice President of Sustainability for Walmart, EnvironmentalLeader

Will people pay to go green? That’s a key question – maybe the question – for any company committed to sustainability. At Walmart, we’ve learned that the answer is a bit nuanced: Basically, usually not – but it depends.

Some customers will pay more for certain products that are better for the environment, and their top purchases include chicken, milk, fruits and vegetables, household cleaners and laundry/dish care. The environmentally responsible products they are less likely to pay more for? TVs, cell phones, computers, beer, pork, mops and sponges and printers.

The economy remains a far more pressing concern. More than 70 percent of consumers say they worry more about price than whether a product is good for the environment or socially responsible, according to an October 2010 study by the Harrison Group.

What does that mean for us? Our approach to sustainability must be nuanced as well.

Read the rest of this article at EnvironmentalLeader.