UK Ethical Consumer Markets Report

The Ethical Consumer Markets Report has been acting as an important barometer of UK spending since 1999. We track sales data across a wide range of consumer sectors.

The report is trusted and used by businesses, academics and the UK Government. 

In 2017, Ethical Consumer worked collaboratively with Triodos Bank for the second year on this project.

Ethical Consumer Markets Report 2017

Overall, the value of ethical spending grew by 3.2% to £81.3 billion, its highest total so far. In many cases, the UK’s ethical spending is shown to be strengthening at the same time as many of its conventional market counterparts have faltered.

As rising inflation causes retail prices to increase, the squeeze on personal spending budgets would have led some to predict a subsequent decline in ethical spending. However, this report shows that UK consumers continue to support ethical businesses and initiatives. In fact, in the YouGov survey we commissioned, almost a quarter (24%) of respondents said they had bought products in the last year specifically because of their ethical reputation.

Report highlights:

  • A steady 5.1% growth in vegetarian product sales marks a sharp increase in the number of people changing their diet for ethical reasons.
  • Bicycle sales continue to grow (5.4%) as Olympic success and healthy lifestyles drive consumer interest.
  • With green energy becoming more affordable, more Brits are choosing cleaner electricity with a 54% growth between 2015 and 2016. 

Download the full Ethical Consumer Markets Report 2017 >