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“I dream of a Green Friday”: Christophe Béchu pinpoints Black Friday and its “unsustainable model of overconsumption”

A difficult cultural battle to wage.

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“I dream of a Green Friday”: Christophe Béchu pinpoints Black Friday and its “unsustainable model of overconsumption”

A difficult cultural battle to wage. Christophe Béchu recognizes this and even speaks of a “revolution” that “we must undertake collectively”. In a speech given on the sidelines of the launch of an ADEME communication campaign, the Minister of Ecological Transition insisted this Tuesday morning on his desire to succeed in “changing the consumption model” by fighting against overconsumption. “The campaign is not “buying is bad”, but “buying is not the only solution”” he clarified, however, extolling the merits of a “more circular” economy. “With the lever of the circular economy, we will be able to act on almost half of our emissions” insisted Christophe Béchu.

Referring to Black Friday “which is approaching”, the former mayor of Angers denounced “his story, which praises a model of unsustainable overconsumption”. “I dream of a Green Friday where the story of sobriety, repair, reuse would be highlighted as a counter-model of society” continued the minister. But this dream risks colliding with a much harsher reality. Due to inflation, French interest in good deals is growing. And the 2023 edition of Black Friday should be no exception.

According to a Kantar study published in November 2021, 50% of French people say that sales periods push them to consume more, a figure which rises to 81% among 18-24 year olds. At the same time, the environmental commitment of brands seems to be losing weight: 44% of French people say that the eco-responsible criterion influences their choice, i.e. 9 points less than a year earlier (53% in 2020).

If around half of French people (51%) agree that Black Friday has a negative impact on the environment, the panelist notes that this figure has also seen a significant decline since 2020 (-6 points). Likewise, 56% of consumers surveyed recognize that Black Friday is a source of waste (compared to 60% in 2020) and only 41% consider that brands should boycott the event (compared to 47% in 2020).

In 2022, nearly 5.8 million consumers will take advantage of Black Friday offers on fashion products in France. Considering Friday and the following weekend alone, nearly 15 million items had been purchased. According to Kantar's analyses, the average expenditure was 67 euros. Figures which reveal that the desire to consume at low prices has entirely taken precedence over environmental considerations.

In five years, from 2017 to 2022, the total turnover of Black Friday in France has jumped by 22% to reach 398 million euros, according to the figures revealed by the panelist, who announces that for this vintage 2023, “faced with the purchasing power crisis”, 36% of French people plan to favor promotional purchases.

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