Nordic Consumer Sustainability Index 2022

Nordic Ecolabelling's new Nordic survey shows that trust in marketing with environmental arguments is low among Nordic consumers.

On the other hand, northerners trust the Nordic Swan Ecolabel and other independent third-party certifications, unlike the companies' own labels.

There is widespread skepticism towards corporate sustainability communication, only 22% trust marketing that uses arguments such as "environmentally friendly", "sustainable" or "climate neutral". At the same time, 61% trust independent third-party certifications such as the Nordic Swan Ecolabel.

- It is crucial that we change to sustainable consumption, otherwise we cannot reach environmental and climate goals and contribute to a more circular economy. We must consume less and when we do consume, it must be easy to make the right choice for the environment.

But our new survey shows that consumers in the Nordics do not have confidence in marketing with environmental arguments, as there is a jungle of "green" brand-like symbols, which mislead consumers. However, the survey also shows that they have confidence in the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, at least for now.

We hope for strong measures against greenwashing. For example, by pushing through the EU's new bill, which wants to ban ecolabelling that is not based on a certification system or established by authorities, as soon as possible, says Anna Linusson, CEO of Ecolabelling Sweden.

This is how consumers in the Nordics feel about sustainable consumption

  • 53% consider climate change to be the most critical sustainability challenge.
  • 22% trust marketing with arguments such as "environmentally friendly", "sustainable" or "climate neutral".
  • 18% trust that companies' own labels are good choices for the environment.
  • 61% trust that products labeled with independent third-party certifications like the Nordic Swan Ecolabel, are good and healthy choices for the environment.
  • 59% think it is important that the ecolabelling organization is objective and independent of the products it licenses.
  • 21% believe that private companies and authorities are doing enough to contribute to more sustainable consumption.
  • 76% have experienced that products are deliberately manufactured so that they cannot be repaired.

The Nordic Consumer Sustainability Index 2022 was carried out by IPSOS Norway on behalf of Nordic Ecolabelling. The survey included a total of 5,419 respondents from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.