‘Green’ Products Losing Their Appeal

Advertising Age, via MSNBC.com:

NEW YORK – Green marketing, a movement so hot that not even a deep recession could kill it, is starting to show signs of consumer revolt. At the very least, it’s a signal that green alone isn’t enough of a marketing proposition; at most, it could signal consumers simply aren’t buying the benefits of environmentally positioned products and brands.

In recent months, sales have begun to slow in categories such as green cleaners and grow in not-so-sustainable ones like bottled water as shoppers decide they may not be worth the tradeoff. And a September study showed big swings in the number of consumers who believe environmentally friendly alternatives are too expensive, don’t work as well as other products and aren’t actually better for the environment — all of which seem to add up to what Timothy Kenyon, director of the GfK Roper Green Gauge study calls “green fatigue.”

Take bottled water, long the nemesis of environmentalists. It was on track for another 52 weeks of decline but rallied nationally last quarter as sales rose 4 percent, according to SymphonyIRI, leaving it flat. Meanwhile, water-filtration devices saw years of double- and high-single-digit sales growth (including a double-digit sales hike in the first half of 2010) turn into a sales decline last quarter, according to IRI data from Deutsche Bank.

Then there’s Frito-Lay, which last month pulled its compostable SunChips after complaints about how noisy they were. Greener cleaners, which had been one of the hottest trends in household products in recent years, also show signs of a shakeout. Clorox Chief Operating Officer Larry Peiros attributed disappointing top-line results in a Nov. 3 conference call to a decline in the natural cleaning segment. “We remain,” he said, “in the No. 1 share position, but we’re declining pretty much along with the category.”

The rest here.

Most Popular


The Gun-Control Debate Could Break America

Last night, the nation witnessed what looked a lot like an extended version of the famous “two minutes hate” from George Orwell’s novel 1984. During a CNN town hall on gun control, a furious crowd of Americans jeered at two conservatives, Marco Rubio and Dana Loesch, who stood in defense of the Second ... Read More
Law & the Courts

Obstruction Confusions

In his Lawfare critique of one of my several columns about the purported obstruction case against President Trump, Gabriel Schoenfeld loses me — as I suspect he will lose others — when he says of himself, “I do not think I am Trump-deranged.” Gabe graciously expresses fondness for me, and the feeling is ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Students’ Anti-Gun Views

Are children innocents or are they leaders? Are teenagers fully autonomous decision-makers, or are they lumps of mental clay, still being molded by unfolding brain development? The Left seems to have a particularly hard time deciding these days. Take, for example, the high-school students from Parkland, ... Read More
PC Culture

Kill Chic

We live in a society in which gratuitous violence is the trademark of video games, movies, and popular music. Kill this, shoot that in repugnant detail becomes a race to the visual and spoken bottom. We have gone from Sam Peckinpah’s realistic portrayal of violent death to a gory ritual of metal ripping ... Read More