The large-scale survey carried out across 12 European countries by the European Container Glass Federation (FEVE) is believed to be one of the most comprehensive ever conducted within the packaging industry.
“Europeans find glass the most recyclable and environmentally friendly packaging material, and they prefer glass because it preserves taste and protects against contamination,” said Dominique Tombeur, president of FEVE. “This is an important affirmation that consumers see glass as the packaging which, more than others, adds value to a product.”
Half of those surveyed believed that glass has a more positive impact on the environment than other packaging materials such as plastics, metal cans and cartons. They ranked glass as the most environmentally friendly packaging product, backed up by the fact that it is 100% fully recyclable and reusable.
Nine out of 10 Europeans know that glass can be endlessly recycled without loss of quality or performance, with 82% of consumers saying they’re active and convinced recyclers. Germany and Austria lead the way as the best performers, with more than 90% of households bringing back their bottles and jars to bottle banks.
The survey shows that most consumers are concerned about the risk that certain packaging materials may have on the food and drinks they buy. 69% of buyers are convinced that glass packaging is the best at preserving the original taste and nutritional value of their food and beverages, and 48% say glass is the safest packaging material for health reasons.
Consumers also associate prestige with food and drinks packaged in glass. 86% of them feel that glass packaging enhances the experience of a ‘special occasion’ and because they attribute a higher added value to products contained in glass. These consumers would recommend glass to others as the best packaging material.
While these are the key elements driving consumer preference for glass, more than 85% of European consumers say they would never think of celebrating a special occasion without glass as a favourite container.
The survey shows that customers are increasingly putting health and environmental needs over convenience. 45% of European consumers said that, if given the choice at their local grocery shop, they would prefer glass containers for their water and fruit juices, for example.
Dominique Tombeur said: “Consumers like, appreciate and choose glass when they can. Our new campaign – ‘Glass is the Clear Choice’ – is aiming to encourage brand owners and retailers to offer a greater choice of products packed in glass to further satisfy consumer needs.”
In response to the survey’s findings, the container glass industry introduces the Friends of Glass movement – an active social network that unites people who believe that glass is the clear choice for themselves, their families and for the environment.
An animated online platform supports the movement covering health and well-being, recycling and environmental issues, glass art and design and a time travelogue of 5,000 years of glass history. Activities and information actions are planned throughout 2009 leading up to the first ever Choose Glass Week in the autumn.
Friends of Glass is a movement that unites people who believe that glass is the clear choice for themselves, their families and for the environment. Friends of Glass was started by FEVE.
Source: European Container Glass Federation
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2020
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