Why Are Enviro-Friendly Products a Good Investment?
What some might call the “green” market is growing. No pun intended. But consumers are regularly spending more wallet share on these products. And I believe if this were any other market, investors would be throwing their hats into the fray left and right.
But despite the really sound growth in these market areas, the strength of this market is not universally known. So don’t be shocked (or dismayed) that your financial advisor isn’t yelling “Buy, buy, buy!!” at you every time another non-ammonia-based cleaning product t is quietly introduced to the marketplace.
Here are some reasons why. So if you’ve been toying with the idea of throwing your hat (or energy) into these products, knowing why Wall Street hasn’t been jumping up and down, may make you feel a little bit better about making a decision to join the movement and solidify your retirement.
First, let me say that English has a wealth of terms that carry very specific marketing, business, economic definitions. Many languages have adopted the English terms, because they lacked this vocabulary.
This being true, it is very interesting that we in the US struggle to come up with a word or small set of words to describe this growing set of products. This ambiguity is telling. It tells us that despite the consumer popularity of products that meet a certain demand, the true corporate world still hasn’t caught on, so Madison Avenue is lagging behind as well.
Here is what I’m saying. Here are some words, all of which tell part of the story.
For instance, in my local Kroger, I’ve learned to look for frozen Indian food in the “Organics” part of the freezer section, right next to the veggie burgers and dairy-free rice crust pizzas. Not a logical location, in my mind.
In a 2013 Huffington Post article, journalist Steven Cohen cited Professor Gerrard of Columbia U. observation that the US hasn’t had a major new piece of federal environmental legislation enacted in over two decades.
Steven Cohen addressed the core issue of “Sustainable” practices, as a larger umbrella to cover the product types most of us think of in this vein. “Sustainability management is the practice of economic production and consumption that minimizes environmental impact and maximizes resources conservation and reuse. Using the Sustainable approach removes the political debate between environmental protection and economic production. This framework demonstrates that continued economic prosperity is dependent on the health of the environment.
Under this framework, organizations:
Some have come to call this a “Green” Economy. Which would call for measurement of green jobs, green markets, investment in green industries, green product adaptation.
The US Bureau of Labor Statistics began measuring green jobs with the 2010 introduction of their Green Jobs Initiative. The purpose is to gather data and trend green jobs, their industrial, occupational and geographic distribution, and the wages of workers in these jobs.
Now, I truly appreciate the focus that we need to provide a new market in order to define, validate and measure it. But…perhaps I am a simple person. I think about what my grandmother would choose.
I look at the number of products that are now available that weren’t available (or prominent on grocery store shelves) 10 years ago. Most of these products are replacement products for their more toxic compatriots.
But my grandmother may not have convinced you to invest in “Green” products for your and your family’s health and economic futures. My grandmother, frankly, lacked in charisma what she exuded in hard work and healthful living.
So, back to the #s.
The global markets for Energy Efficient technologies, Waste management/Recycling, Water supply/Sanitation/Water Efficiency and Sustainable Transport are expected to exceed 1.2 Trillion by 2020.
Add in foods, personal care, home care and lawn care products (to name a few) that consumers are gravitating towards, and shifting their spend away from traditional packaged goods products, and you have an economic mini-revolution. A healthy one.
To end with a quote from Steven Cohen, Huffington Post, “It is easy to dismiss this as a fad, but of course some people said the same thing about globalization, information technology and the internet.”
Join me in making both physically and fiscally healthier choices. There are a lot of options.
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