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Consumers Demand More From Manufacturers

Consumers are actively seeking products from companies that make an effort to reduce emissions and ethically manufacture goods, new research reveals.

The research, commissioned by Buy NZ Made, reveals 92 percent of New Zealanders believe sourcing ethically manufactured goods is important.

Executive Director Dane Ambler says the tide is turning on fast fashion and unsustainable manufacturing practices.

"Consumers are waking up to the amount of emissions that come with importing goods. They expect more responsibility from emitters, and care about the longevity and quality of their products.

"We are seeing a significant shift in consumer perception. Seventy-two percent of respondents see NZ Made goods as more environmentally-friendly and sustainable, and three quarters see NZ made goods as more ethically manufactured compared to offshore.

"New Zealand has carved out a niche for high-quality, sustainable products that stand the test of time. We know imports account for half of our carbon footprint. Our gross carbon dioxide emissions are mainly produced by transport and manufacturing industries and construction.

"Buying local is a way to significantly reduce our country’s overall footprint."

Sustainable Business Council Executive Director Mike Burrell says more and more we are seeing businesses shift their attitudes and business models to more sustainable and environmentally friendly practices.

"Not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because it makes good business sense to do so.

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"We have moved into a new era where climate action and sustainable practices is the new business as usual - as both consumers and investors increasingly demand sustainably produced goods and services.

"The reality is those businesses who don’t make the shift to a more sustainable future risk losing their competitive advantage and being left behind."

Kind Face founder Chris Larcombe says the research proves New Zealanders are heading in the right direction, with decision making based on "values", rather than "value".

"We believe ethical and sustainable values should not only be inherent in the DNA of New Zealand businesses, but there needs to be a focus on being a 'better business' than previous generations.

"This means manufacturing in New Zealand from environmentally responsible materials, treating employees like family members, supporting local suppliers, supporting communities and most importantly being open, honest and transparent."

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