Apr 1 - Consumers Confused by 'Green' Market Claims Stop Buying When Misled

Cone, a communications and strategy agency, conducted a survey entitled, "2011 Cone Green Gap Trend Tracker," in which they found an increasing number of Americans identified themselves as accurately being able to understand green marketing claims. However, when probed with more substantial questions testing this knowledge, the majority fell short.

Some major findings of the survey include:

  • 97% of Americans say they understand green marketing terms (up 7% from 2008).
  • 41% of Americans believe that the use of a "green term" indicates that the product has a positive impact on the environment (instead of being just less negative than other/previous products).
  • 79% of Americans want detailed information about a product’s green claim directly on the packaging.
  • 71% of Americans will stop buying a product if they feel they have been misled.

What does this mean? It means that consumers are still puzzled over environmental advertising claims, want more detailed information about these claims, and are willing to punish manufacturers for deceiving them.

These facts are some of the core premises for our Environmental Advertising Compliance Campaign, which targets manufacturers and distributors of products presenting deceiving green marketing messages. Click here to find out who we’re targeting and how you can help us crack down on deceptive advertising.

We also are supporting SB 567 (DeSaulnier) : Truthful Advertising in Plastics. This bill builds upon our campaign by requiring scientific standards to be met before using terms like "biodegradable" on all plastic products. Want to make sure SB 567 becomes law? Track the bill on our site.