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More Americans Likely to Purchase Products Made of Recycled Materials, According to Frost & Sullivan


80% of Americans Report Their Household Recycles “Inconvenience” Still a Factor for Non-Recyclers

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — As part of the results of its second Consumer Choice Survey, Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, is pleased to announce the results of its study examining the awareness of recycling programs and environmental behaviors among Americans.

Awareness of community recycling programs is fairly high among Americans (82% of respondents to the survey). Local newspapers appear to be the largest single contributor to this awareness (48%), although word-of-mouth by friends, neighbors, and family also serves as a strong source of community recycling programs (combined at 93%).

Encouragingly, more than nine out of ten Americans report they have seen the recycled materials symbol on products they purchase. However, fewer really know what this symbol means: 68% incorrectly believe that the label identifies the product as recyclable, with 31% properly understanding that it means the product was made of at least some recyclable materials.

This is striking, considering that 73% of respondents reported that they are very/somewhat likely to purchase products made of recycled materials in the future.

“Talk about brand identity – companies that use recycled materials or promote recycling of their products have certainly done a good job at getting Americans to recognize recycling symbols and encourage people to become interested in their products,” comments Tonya Fowler, Director of Competitive Benchmarking Services for Frost & Sullivan. “However, there is a need to better educate consumers as to the exact meaning behind the designation of recycling symbols.”

More Americans report their household recycles (80%). Of these recycling Americans, nearly half are motivated by their desire to help preserve the environment, followed by the belief in conserving resources and an individual, ethical responsibility.

According to the survey, the largest proportion of non-recycling Americans indicate that they do not recycle due to the lack of community support (39%) or because they “just don’t think about recycling” (38%). However, it appears that if reasons for not recycling are met with positive motivations, future recycling among this group may occur. Community support and monetary incentives serve as the top motivating factors among those who cite reasons for not recycling.

Interestingly, compared to the 2006 study, fewer non-recycling Americans report that they do not recycle due to inconvenience. “This may be due to increases in recyclable trash containers, or the increased awareness of how small recycling acts can have huge impacts on the environment over time,” adds Fowler.

The survey was conducted by Frost & Sullivan’s Competitive Benchmarking Services group, a division of the Customer Research team that conducts independent, non-sponsored research among end-users to evaluate and measure companies and trends in the market.

For more information on the study, please send an e-mail to Jake Wengroff, Corporate Communications, at, with your full name, company name, title, telephone number, company e-mail address, company website, city, state and country. Upon receipt of the above information, an overview will be sent to you by e-mail.

About Frost & Sullivan

Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, partners with clients to accelerate their growth. The company’s TEAM Research, Growth Consulting and Growth Team Membership™ empower clients to create a growth-focused culture that generates, evaluates and implements effective growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan employs over 45 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses and the investment community from more than 30 offices on six continents. For more information about Frost & Sullivan’s Growth Partnership Services, visit


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