Consumers are often confused as to which products or services to purchase. This confusion can arise from: information received through advertising messages; increase in the number of product labelling schemes that infer sustainability; salespeoples' advice; in-store marketing, etc. If we ask Canadians to identify 'sustainable' products or services, are they equipped to make informed and appropriate choices? My Sustainable Canada is engaged in a series of projects that seek greater understanding through exploring key research questions such as:
What is a sustainable product?
How do consumers identify sustainable products?
How do we encourage consumers to purchase sustainably?
Canada's Chemicals Management Plan is interested in promoting the reduction of toxic substances in products, while governments at all levels, are focusing on the reduction of toxics through extended producer responsibility programs and product stewardship initiatives. My Sustainable Canada has expertise in developing consumer-based strategies and behaviour change programs that aim to reduce chemical substances in products and services.
Canadian municipalities are developing sustainability strategies to measure local citizen behaviour related to transportation, water consumption, and waste reduction as well as developing programming to encourage healthier and sustainable lifestyles. My Sustainable Canada has contributed to this discussion through research on sustainable consumption-related options, indicators and targets that serve to help municipalities transition towards a more sustainable community and citizenry.
Businesses, governments and other public institutions play an important role in market transformation. They do this through purchasing and logistics choices that better our environment, our economy and our communities. My Sustainable Canada supports these groups in their efforts to buy smarter, greener and more socially conscious products and services.