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Key Sustainability Trends in the U.S.

Key Sustainability Trends

It has been 11 years since NMI first generated insight into the LOHAS (Lifestyles Of Health And Sustainability) market and quantitatively developed its leading-edge general population segmentation model. During that time, the market has shifted from one of denying that sustainability is an important market force to vigorously embracing it, and from a "boom" economy to one that is significantly more cautious.


At the start of the Recession, some were concerned that it would distract the corporate world's attention to sustainability. Clearly the Recession has made a mark on sustainability, as it has on every other aspect of the economy. However, while we are living in a more austere era, as a society we still do care deeply about our health, the future of our communities, social issues, and the world around us – and most strive to make the planet a better place to live, both for today and future generations. In fact, consumers around the world have a good deal of optimism and hope regarding health and sustainability, and that is evident throughout this groundbreaking research – now conducted in 23 countries.

Throughout this report on the American consumer, you will find many interesting trends – some up, some down – and many interesting comparisons across consumer groups and product categories. For example:

  • Consumers are clearly showing more sophistication within the realm of sustainability – with greater understanding of its breadth, depth, and implications, and they pick the elements that mean the most to them.
  • Sustainability-related benefits are showing growth in a number of categories across the consumer landscape. Their growth is due in part to the fact that many products and services now come with fewer and fewer trade-offs, and consumers continue to gravitate toward brands that help them live healthfully and sustainably.
  • More and more consumers are engaging in green behaviors, whether that's recycling, driving less, voting with their dollars, or any of dozens of other behaviors consumers may engage in to lighten their environmental footprint.

As the market matures, NMI expects to find more consumers finding ways to incorporate sustainable products and behaviors into their lives. And, the more effort that is invested in facilitating this behavior by organizations of all types, the faster this behavior will increase. In the end, eighty percent of all Americans are eager to safeguard the future of their health and that of the environment and society around them.

Table of Contents

LOHAS Methodology & Consumer Segmentation

Trends in Healthy & Sustainable Attitudes

Consumers' Sustainable Behaviors

Product Purchase Patterns

Attitudes & Behavior Related to CSR

Five Top Sustainability Questions

Key Trends Synopsis

NMI Solutions More...

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Exploring The Shift. The Shift is not a thing. It is an action and a state of being, a Shift of awareness from EGO- to ECO-System.


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