People care most about other people

Consumers want a 3rd party certified, human-specific consumer label

60% of consumers are willing to pay a premium for socially responsible products

Consumers would most support a 3rd party certified, human-specific consumer label, as opposed to animal, environmental or general sustainability or corporate social responsibility (CSR) indexes. That is one conclusion of a New York University (NYU) study conducted by Stephanie Tully, which can be read here.

http://web-docs.stern.nyu.edu/pa/winer_tully.pdf

The study’s main conclusion is that more than 60% of consumers are willing to pay a premium for socially responsible products. However, the study further suggests that demand would be even higher for a social label that:

  • Benefits people, as opposed to animals or the environment.

  • Focuses on a single beneficiary, as opposed to an index of various sustainability or “CSR” criteria.

  • certified by a third party, as opposed to self-reporting.

In light of the support for worker/human-focused labels, Ms. Tully also points out a counterintuitive fact, “the vast majority of research in this area has focused on environmental benefits.” She would expect that more research and labeling efforts would be dedicated to that which people are most invested in as skeptical consumers, the impact of their purchases on other people.

Ms. Tully’s research is a main driver in Thayer Certified’s singular commitment to human safety and fair labor. This is what people most want to know about their purchases, but while they have many tools to understand the impact of their purchases on animals and the environment, they still lack a clear window into the labor conditions behind their products and services.