- Puma is involving young consumers in its sustainability initiatives through a new “Voices of a Re:Generation” program, according to a press release.
- As part of the year-long push, four young environmentalists from Europe and the U.S. will collaborate with Puma executives on sustainability efforts. The initiative builds on previous efforts by the shoe and apparel brand, which ranked high on the Business of Fashion’s sustainability rankings last year, per the press release.
- The inclusive panel was inspired by research that found 71% of young people do not feel their voices are being heard when it comes to environmental issues and 49% say they would like brands to make more commitments in the area.
Puma is putting young people at the center of its new environmental push in an effort to make its Earth-conscious initiatives resonate better with Gen Z consumers. The new initiative seeks to explore actionable ways to implement the participants’ feedback in its strategy while using their platforms to communicate the brand’s efforts.
“We’ve always documented our progress in sustainable practices. However, our participation in Conference of the People has shed light on the fact that the information we share isn’t always easily understood by the next generation,” said Anne-Laure Descours, the brand’s chief sourcing officer, in a press statement. “We recognize the need for change, and we're committed to making sustainability more accessible and transparent to everyone.”
The four talents selected for the project include Alice Aedy, a U.K.-based storyteller and co-founder of the Earthrise Studio; Andrew Burgess, a U.S. upcycler; Luke Jaque-Rodney, a sustainability and health vlogger living in Germany; and Jade Roche, a visual artist located in France. Throughout the year, the cohort will meet with Puma executives including Descours and the brand’s sustainability team.
The environment is a key issue for younger consumers, with Puma’s research echoing a recent Piper Sandler survey finding that the environment was the most common top-ranked concern among teens, at 19%, followed by racial equity at 9%. The same report found that the spending power of teens is growing, with self-reported spending growing 2% year-over-year to $2,419. As the spending power of this cohort grows, it's important that brands work to court them effectively.
However, while many brands have attempted to become more sustainable, these efforts haven’t always been well received by young consumers. Accusations of “greenwashing,” or pretending to be environmentally friendly for profit, can kill even a well-intentioned campaign.
The “Voices of a Re:Generation” coalition could help Puma better understand what resonates with young consumers in an effort to do away with some of the guesswork. It is the latest effort for the shoe brand to reach Gen Z, with previous activations including a Pokemon Go partnership and a metaverse experience.