Increasing demand for environmentally and ethically responsible products

A sneak peek at a new report that shows how brands are being held accountable for their own business practices and those of their suppliers.

Changing pet landscape

New data is available that further explores the changing landscape of business expectations in the pet industry, as demand increases for environmentally and ethically responsible products. The Pet Sustainability Coalition (PSC) and the World Pet Association (hosts of the US SuperZoo trade show) partnered in 2018 to take a pulse on a rapidly advancing issue for the industry. They surveyed over 225 pet professionals and will release a full report in early 2019.

Pets International has worked with PSC to have a brief glance at this innovative data as part of its mission to drive the industry toward positive environmental and social impact, and to equip its readers with cutting edge information that helps their businesses succeed.

Expectations are increasing... and fast

The data shows a dramatic increase in pressure on businesses to expand their responsibility from strictly shareholder value to demonstrating responsible treatment of communities and environments where they do business.

This expansion in business accountability means that brands are held accountable not just for their own business practices, but also for the practices of their tier 1, tier 2 and tier 3 suppliers.

Current sustainability programmes are ineffective

Only 23% of pet industry professionals rank their own sustainability programme as effective, and 26% report that they have no sustainability programme at all.

What is needed to meet expectations?

Not surprisingly, this increase in accountability for businesses is fuelling a need for more education. The industry needs to be informed about what is expected of them. How good is their current performance? What tools are available to ease implementation? Particularly small businesses should be aware of collaborative opportunities, as they need more leverage to drive systematic improvement in areas that are too large for one company to change on its own.

PSC is successfully serving businesses

Headed into its sixth year as an organisation, the Pet Sustainability Coalition is making a difference. Coalition member companies show an impressive skew in positive data, reporting much higher access to education and tools and a higher interest in collaborating. Collaboration is key if the industry is to address the bigger sustainability issues. This includes agricultural impacts and equitable labour practices as well as the ability to better trace materials and ingredients from extraction to production, retail and end of life.

The full report is available for download on the Pet Sustainability Coalition website. If you are interested in strengthening your business through profitable environment and social practices, you can now join PSC, who expanded its membership to Europe in May 2018.

Author

Caitlyn Bolton

Executive Director and Co-founder of the Pet Sustainability Coalition