A survey shows rising levels of concern about packaging from online retailers - including Amazon - as 500,000 sign a petition for 'plastic-free packaging choices'.
The public opinion research was sponsored by Oceana, the world’s largest international ocean conservation organisation.
It found: "UK customers are by far the most in favour of a plastic-free checkout option (81%), with half of them willing to shop elsewhere to be given a plastic-free option (52%)."
In response to the findings Oceana in the UK, the U.S. and Canada announced it is 'launching a campaign calling on Amazon to offer its customers plastic-free packaging choices'.
Matt Littlejohn, Senior Vice President, said: "Jeff Bezos and Amazon say they are 'obsessed' with meeting the needs of their customers.
"It’s clear from the results of our survey that what Amazon customers want is for the company to do the right thing and offer plastic-free options at checkout.
"British consumers want to end the plastic disaster and Amazon can make a difference for its customers and the oceans by doing this: this is a company that, according to recent news reports, shipped approximately seven billion packages in 2019, many of those packed with plastic.
“This is a company led by a CEO Jeff Bezos who is investing in space exploration and that is testing using drones to deliver stuff to our houses. They surely have the ability to figure out how to offer plastic-free alternatives."
Amazon’s packaging and materials lab have created lightweight plastic-free packaging, including a new mailer that the company reports have been used 100 million times. The company is known for its innovation in logistics and delivery technology and has made commitments to protect the environment, including a pledge to be zero carbon by 2040. Further,
Amazon recently announced it eliminated non-recyclable plastic in packaging across its Fulfilment Centers in India.
YouGov polled a representative sample of 2,202 adults in the UK on behalf of Oceana and found that for the Amazon UK customers surveyed:
94% were concerned or very concerned about plastic pollution and its impact on the oceans and the environment;
89% said they either strongly or somewhat agreed with the statement, “I would use a plastic-free choice/alternative packaging if offered;”
52% said they would be willing to part ways to shop at online retailers offering plastic free packaging;
61% strongly and/or somewhat agreed with the statement, “the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has forced me to shop online more than I did before the virus;” and
56% strongly and/or somewhat agreed with the statement, “I'm bothered by all the extra plastic packing I am now receiving due to increased online shopping because of the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.”
Oceana is calling on online shoppers and ocean activists to ask Amazon for plastic-free options at checkout by adding their names to Change.org/PlasticFreeChoice, a petition created by Oceana supporter Nicole Delma.
Nearly 500,000 people have already added their names to the petition. “The survey echoes what I’ve heard from so many other Amazon customers who have signed the petition,” said Ms. Delma.
“People want to be able to buy from Amazon and avoid plastic. It makes them feel terrible when that package they’ve been anxiously waiting for arrives stuffed with plastic.”
In 2019, according to news accounts, Amazon shipped approximately 7 billion packages worldwide– which would be equivalent to nearly one package for every person living on earth.
To access the complete survey results for the UK, U.S. and Canada, please visit www.oceana.org/PlasticFreeAmazon