Sustainability: Transforming food business models

Accenture explores the need to innovate sustainably and the shift in food consumer behavior.

The shift in food consumer behavior

Thanks in part to the global pandemic, sustainability is accelerating the most radical shift in Food consumer behavior we have seen since the introduction of convenience foods.

Fair trade and recycling may not be new news but few will have escaped the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report headlines, spotlighting legislation’s increasing role in accelerating radical change. For Food, pressures such as avoiding landfill, will move beyond consumer choice.

As multiple industries face the growth of the ‘Repair, Reuse, Recycle’ economy, business models will change, driving new consumer behaviors that will push Food businesses to adapt faster. For example, the growth of refills (with German discounter Aldi being the latest to move in this direction on cereals). The need for transparency on sustainable sourcing and to support the oncost to consumers is inspiring new technology. The pressure to innovate sustainably will only intensify.

How do businesses achieve sustainability at scale?

Here are some clues from our US market research.

Factors impacting consumer decision making

The concept of ethical consumerism has existed for centuries, however in recent years, sustainability’s traction has grown consistently. Perhaps surprisingly, the pandemic and economic downturn only added to the consumer’s determination! Consumers are now increasingly demanding products that meet a wide variety of Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards.

Please click on the image below to view key factors that impact consumers when making food and beverage purchase decisions.

Food sustainability | Customer decision making factors

Driving a positive sustainable imprint

We know we have to reorient the way we do business, to become more responsible in every decision we make.

Accenture built the Sustainability Accelerator to better align with our partners and achieve the UN Sustainable Development goals. Based on your input, the Sustainability Accelerator identifies opportunities to further deliver responsible value.

Accenture’s sustainability value promise

Sustainability spans environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues, from transitioning to a zero-carbon economy to human rights to inclusion and diversity. So we have made sustainability one of our greatest responsibilities-not just because it’s the right thing to do, but also because we believe that it will create the most powerful force for change in our generation.

Today’s rapid acceleration to digital presents us with a breakthrough opportunity to create a more sustainable future.


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