Retail landscape

Sustainable retail trends for 2022

The retail world has changed dynamically during the last two years. The pandemic has caused a seismic swing in how consumers shop and how retailers react to changing demands, both environmentally and economically.

This demanding retail landscape has pushed sustainability to the top of agendas – and 2022 is no different. If you’re looking to take sustainability seriously in 2022 then these trends are predicted to be the biggest for business and a better environment.

Environmentally & ethically sound products

Environmental and ethical concerns among consumers have grown exponentially during the pandemic, with many consumers saying it now drives their purchasing decisions.

A recent survey by Accenture of 25,000 people across 22 countries has revealed a shift among consumers who they like to call the ‘re-imagined’. Among these re-imagined consumers, 76% are looking to purchase and do business with companies who source services and materials in ethical ways. 65% of those consumers are also looking to purchase from businesses whose green credentials stack up.

For retailers, sourcing ethically and environmentally sound products isn’t just a win for consumer relations. It can also lead to increased efficiency in the supply chain thanks to improved communication and good working relationships. The Ethical Trading Initiative has some helpful tips for small retailers looking to improve their ethical procurement processes.

Interestingly, this 2019 report by the International Trade Centre showed that small and micro businesses across Europe dominate sustainable sales suggesting that it is easier to introduce sustainable products the smaller you are. If you are looking to make your retail approach more sustainable in 2022 then organisations like Sedex can help you to see transparency and sustainability throughout your supply chain.  


Durability of products

In-line with sustainability of products sourced, it’s also becoming imperative to deliver on the longevity of those products too - 65 percent of German and UK consumers now say they will buy more high-quality items that last longer.

Much has been made of ‘fast fashion’ and single use plastic over the last five years. If your products are ending up in landfill shortly after they’ve been purchased, either through limited use or quick wear and tear, it could counteract any sustainable supply chain choices you make.

Considering the entire lifecycle of your products is now key for any retailer looking to create a holistic sustainability approach. But global management consultancy, Kearney, estimates that only 21% of consumer goods companies are actively working to lower the environmental impact of their consumers’ use of their products.

They highlight the importance of retailers taking more ownership of what happens to their product once it’s in their customer’s hands – and making that product last or offering good re-purposing and recycling solutions. California-based candle retailer SAND + FOG ask their customers to re-purpose their candles’ sustainable wood lid and glass holder. Sometimes a simple nudge from retailers can go a long way to helping customers to consider the lifecycle of your product and find an alternative use.  


Innovative materials & exceptional service

There are some great examples in the past few years of retailers combining innovative materials and exceptional service to bring sustainability to the forefront. From offering customers a choice of normal or “eco light” packaging to displaying environmental impact across product lines and delivery options these are great examples of how sustainability can sit at the heart of innovation and exceptional service.

Italian paper manufacturer, Fedrigoni, has 2022 down as the year when luxury brands start taking a serious look at recycled paper packaging to offer this approach.

“Long considered weak, blemished and too rustic for the premium look, the luxury sector has typically avoided recycled papers for not fitting with their brand positioning,” says Annette Clayton, Global Account Manager at Fedrigoni. She emphasises that luxury retailers will have no choice but to start exploring sustainable and innovative materials if they are to appeal to the new environmentally-conscious consumer.

In 2022, consumers want to see retailers going the extra mile when it comes to both service and materials. And with our ‘Service with Guts’ attitude, Worldpack can help you with that.


At Worldpack, we’re ready to help you put sustainability at the top of your packaging and goods not for re-sale strategy. Talk to one of our account managers today.You can email at or ring us on +31(0) 88 494 20 80.

Celine Ouderland
Marketing Specialist

We can’t wait to to help you put sustainability at the top of your packaging and goods not for re-sale strategy!

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+31(0) 88 494 20 80