How we live on this earth is becoming an ever-present discussion. Over the past 5 years, but more so over the past 18 months, we have seen a change in the climate debate where, for the first time, the social voice is louder and is having a greater impact on sustainability than the science has had over the past 30 years.
There is a significant trend globally where society is becoming more vocal and active and is expecting organisations to respond accordingly – organisations are expected to take a stance on environmental, political and ethical issues over the bottom line.
2019 saw several firsts in the war against plastic and single use plastic products. California banned straws in restaurants, the European Union voted against the use of a host of single use items (to be implemented over the next 3 years) and Tanzania became the latest African country to ban plastic bags. Some studies have revealed that approximately 86% of the waste that impacts the oceans are plastic products (30% plastic bags). Once again, the disruption is both from a societal perspective and a regulatory perspective.
The industries that are likely to be disrupted by this trend are the FMCG industry and manufacturers of plastic products that service FMCG companies, retailers and the fast food sectors.
Winners that will emerge from this are organisations which have moved away from paying lip service to this issue and moved to visible and measurable action. Businesses that consider Circular business models by design, Dell for example, are designing ways to make input materials and components easier to repair, remanufactured or recycled where waste is kept to a minimum. Other companies such as ASDA, McDonalds, Evian and Costa Coffee all have initiatives running to reduce the amount of waste that ends up in landfills and the oceans. Losers in the area will be organisations at that do not show commitment through action or do not change their business model to support this trend i.e. plastic bag manufacturers that do not move to biodegradable or reusable bags, straw producers that do not move to paper, glass or metal straws as well as organisations that appear to be irresponsible through the lack of adoption of alternatives to plastic.
Written by Trevor Jamieson
Contact MAC Consulting to assist you in ensuring you remain relevant in this era of disruption.