Image Values Crash – It’s High Time for Action!
We all suspected it was true, but now the figures are out. Plastics have never had such a poor image as long as comparable figures have been available. And Plastics Europe has data that stretch back a quarter of a century. The representative survey in December 2018 polled 1500 people, including the sub-groups "broad population," decision makers and young educated people (with at least general qualification for university entrance). Responding to the question of whether they had heard anything specifically positive or negative about plastics in recent months, almost half (47 %) of the "young educated people" spontaneously brought to mind something unwelcome – namely marine pollution. A year before, fewer than 10 % of those surveyed had made this association.
Not even half of the decision-makers and young educated people now see plastics as "very or predominantly positive". Even in 1993, these population groups were better disposed towards the material, before a multi-year advertising campaign had to raise the image of plastics above about 65 %, a threshold deemed acceptable. Not surprisingly, the negative perception is mainly the result of packaging applications, since people nowadays consider packaging more harmful and more superfluous than even one, or 25, years ago.
We can see a ray of hope in the presentation by PlasticsEurope at the end of March: in cooperation with IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen e. V. (German Association of Plastics Packaging and Films), it is to conduct a communication campaign to improve the situation. At its core is the newsroom kunststoffverpackungen.de, started in October, which, using social media and audio campaigns, among other measures, is aimed at giving more coverage to facts that have been neglected in favor of emotional considerations.
More details about the image survey can be found at page 5 and www.kunststoffe-international.com/8392531
Dr. Kalrhorst Klotz
karlhorst.klotz <AT> hanser.de
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