Coca-Cola puts health and environment first to satisfy consumers

Stephan ShakespeareCEO and Co-Founder
February 05, 2020, 9:57 AM UTC

The environment, sustainability and personal health are increasingly important topics for Britons.

As we become more accustomed to climate strikes, and groups like Extinction Rebellion and activists like Greta Thunberg become news mainstays, the average consumer is now much more aware of the impact of their purchases.

New YouGov research showed that the environment was the third most important issue facing the country in January 2020, reaching a record high of 34% of the population. In second place is concern for public health (42%), which has increased by nearly 10% in a year (concern was at 34% in 2019).

The impact these two issues are having on businesses can be seen by changes announced from one of the world’s largest brands – Coca Cola. The beverage conglomerate has pledged to use at least 50% recycled material in its packaging by 2030 and has also focused on healthier products for consumers, in order to be “part of the solution”.

In the face of rising health concerns, Coca-Cola spent 2019 diversifying their fizzy drink offering towards healthier products, such as a sugar-free version of Coca-Cola.

YouGov data shows that of those who consume a non-diet carbonated drink at least once a week, six in 10 (62%) think their average sugar intake is too high, indicating an appetite for a healthier option. The company’s efforts last year clearly resonated with consumers, as organic revenues from October to December 2019 rose 7% from the same period a year ago.

YouGov data shows that over half of Brits (54%) say that the environmental sustainability of a product affects the decisions they make around food and drink, while almost two fifths (37%) are influenced by sugar levels. This demonstrates clearly how these issues have permeated the industry and Coca-Cola’s foresight to tackle them head-on.

As concern towards health and the environment becomes more common, businesses have to adapt in order to reflect what consumers care about. Consideration of Coca-Cola among Brits (whether someone would consider purchasing from the brand in future) has risen throughout 2019 – by +5.7 points from October to January alone – implying that whatever changes have been implemented have had a positive effect.   

This article previously appeared in City A.M.