Each year when BBC Radio 2 run their 500 words short-story writing competition for children aged between 5-13, the Oxford University Press examines the words used in the stories sent to the contest to find out the ‘word of the year’.

This year, the word ‘Plastic’ came up top, appearing 3,359 times in the 134,790 stories submitted and up 100% from last year, with children sending in stories with  titles such as The Plastic Shore and The Evil Mr Plastic. David Attenborough’s Blue Planet II programme is credited with influencing these stories, as the use of the terms such as recycle and recycling also increased, along with packaging, pollution, plastic bottle, plastic bag, and plastic waste. Children have shown they are acutely aware of the impact plastic has on our environment and how it will affect their own future -Vineeta Gupta ,the head of children’s dictionaries at Oxford University Press Click To Tweet Why this matters A company’s green credentials and the effect they have on the environment have never been under more scrutiny. A new international study by Unilever reveals that a third of consumers are now choosing to buy from brands they believe are doing social or environmental good. The study asked 20,000 adults from five countries how their sustainability concerns impact their choices in-store and at home. It also mapped their claims against real purchase decisions, giving a more accurate picture than ever of what people are actually buying – and why. Today’s consumer has high expectations in terms of social and environmental issues and looks beyond just the financial cost of their purchase. They are becoming increasingly interested in brands which use a more ‘Circular’ business model which not only use the minimal amount of the earth’s valuable resources but are also manufactured in a way that designs out waste throughout the life cycle of the product or where waste is given new life. The circular concept is not only model for a greener and healthier planet, it’s also a developing consumer mindset. Click To Tweet  

This report highlights the key trends influencing the kitchen and bathroom consumer in 2019

With the focus of 2018 being so much on Brexit and its unsettling influence on the UK economy, it is tempting to view all consumer behaviours through the ‘Brexit’ lens, when in reality, consumer behaviours and attitudes are moulded by many different influences and drivers.

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