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TCC Global

Liberté, égalité, fraternité… and sustainabilité? Becoming part of a more sustainable France

Challenge yourself to face anchored sustainable changes

Nick Gyss, Regional Director

Challenge yourself to face anchored sustainable changes

Consumers, a new momentum with Covid

French consumers have adopted more responsible habits over the last ten years. A recent survey found that over half of French shoppers say they have made significant steps to reduce their environmental impact when making purchase decisions.  At the same time, many shoppers are still mindful of where and how they spend their money, with 60% finding it difficult to consume responsibly due to high costs or lack of information.

Distributors with strong commitments before covid

The authenticity of grocery product and whether it is local, organic or both, has become increasingly important to shoppers. But as well as food and drink, wider concerns around the sustainable credentials of homeware, electrical appliances, and clothing are also front of mind.

COVID-19 has dominated many aspects of life for the past 12 months, but the issue of sustainability has remained a priority for many businesses in France.

Carrefour is leading by example and was the first retailer to invite its major suppliers to sign the "Food Transition Pact", committing to providing produce that is nutritionally healthy and uses eco-friendly packaging. In addition, it has confirmed its target of cutting 50% of its food waste by 2025 (compared with 2016 levels) and last year, 70.9% of the waste generated by its stores was recycled.

Similarly, Auchan recently announced it has launched a new sustainability focused business plan from 2022 that will help customers hoping to buy ethically and sustainably sourced products. They have pledged to stock items that are easy to trace the origins of, leading to increased sales of locally sourced goods made from sustainable ingredients.

As part of its long-term commitment to better eating, Intermarché announced plans to improve more than 6,500 products by 2025, in response to environmental, societal as well as health challenges. In addition to this, the supermarket group has made huge steps in supporting local and organic agriculture, namely through its partnership with online agricultural video channel CultivonsNous.tv.

We are also seeing a continued effort by French food retailers to use sustainable packaging. While limiting the use of plastic is not new or unfamiliar to most supermarkets, stores such as Leclerc have been at the forefront of this and have committed to removing plastic bags from their stores and replacing them with reusable hessian bags, which are less harmful to the environment.

Supporting the effort

At tcc France, we have long supported the efforts of both French and global businesses to become more sustainable, and proudly encourage more sustainable habits via the loyalty campaigns we create.

It is important to have the right balance between sustainability and purchasing power, which becomes increasingly more challenging amidst a global pandemic.

First and foremost, we work with retailers to develop campaigns that drive loyalty, but they are part of a bigger picture, which listens to the issues shoppers are passionate about, incorporates them into our rewards, and in turn encourages sustainable and eco-friendly lifestyle habits.

Our RE-GENERATION glassware range campaign, launched in collaboration with Netto in France, is a perfect recent example of this. Specifically designed for environmentally conscious consumers, the range is made entirely from recycled glass and cork.

A holistic process

A huge amount of research is done by tcc ahead of designing our products. For example, glass was chosen because it can be repeatedly recycled without any reduction in quality unlike some metals and many plastics. Also, waste glass melts at a lower temperature than glass being made from raw materials, so not only is the product high quality but the process of creating it uses less energy.

In turn, the range aims to make it easier to store and save food, so that less waste is thrown away or spoilt. So far, we have already recycled 1.6 tonnes of glass, and will continue to do so.

In Netto stores, the display units that are used to showcase the range are sustainably produced and all other point of sale elements, whether it is signage or other marketing materials, are produced locally in France to cut down on emissions when transporting them to stores.

tcc France in partnership with NETTO has ensured that maximum awareness and advocacy has been built using multiple channels. We created partnerships with respected health and wellness influencers on Instagram to engage with the relevant communities, including @cindypoum and @cookingformybaby, who used their platforms to support and demonstrate RE-GENERATION glassware. The use of influencers ensured we were able to target green conscious consumers.

Being part of a more sustainable France

Crucially, the issue of sustainability will continue to gather momentum. Our own research in partnership with SightX last month revealed that 72.6% of French respondents choose products in a supermarket based on whether they are environmentally friendly. 84.6% think supermarkets can help them make more sustainable choices.

This shows that not only do a huge number of shoppers make purchasing decisions in supermarkets based on their views about sustainability, but an even larger number believe that there is still more that retailers can do to help them improve.

We believe that this is a team game. There is no opposition to us protecting the environment other than ourselves and we will only succeed if we work together. We are proud to work with supermarkets such as Netto in France and other partners to create loyalty campaigns that are sustainable and help shoppers make more environmentally friendly choices.

In addition, we were delighted to have recently won awards for our commitment to sustainable loyalty programs. tcc won five awards and received one honourable mention at the International Design Awards this year. Our Fissler Cool Planet, Treelingz Forest Builders, Natural Powerz, Treelingz Forest Friends, and UnBEElievables ranges have all been recognised for their strong sustainability credentials.

We will continue to work hard with our retail partners to bring sustainable loyalty to life and we are proud to be part of a forward thinking, responsible and sustainability-focused future in France.

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