Ethical Consumerism For Business Essay Examples

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Ethics, Business, Customers, Products, Supply Chain, Consumerism, Consumer Economy, Clothes

Pages: 7

Words: 1925

Published: 2020/12/26

ID Number


Ethical consumerism is an expression of great ethical concerns regarding organisations and products by choosing to buy a product that conforms to the ethical standards, or by choosing not to buy a product that does not conform to the ethical standards. The contemporary influences of consumerism transformed the consumers into becoming more vocal in stating their privileges and rights in the market. All over the world, consumers are increasingly becoming ethically concerned and social conscious. This paper explores how Primark delivers ethical business practices and the factors that may influence consumer buying behaviours.


Ethical consumerism is an expression of great ethical concerns regarding organisations and products by choosing to buy a product that conforms to the ethical standards, or by choosing not to buy a product that does not conform to the ethical standards (Cho and Krasser 2011). Ethical does not just encompass environmental considerations. Rather, ethical encompasses matters of conscience including fair trade, animal welfare, and social aspects including labour standards, and more self-absorbed health issues behind the expansion of organic food sales (Cho and Krasser 2011).
The contemporary influences of consumerism transformed the consumers into becoming more vocal in stating their privileges and rights in the market (Ismail and Panni 2008). Customer care is one of the most significant elements that can impact the purchasing behaviours of consumers. Fairness with product pricing and pro-environmental purchasing behaviour of consumers are swayed by the availability of the social and ethical responsible companies that provide sound and environment-friendly products (Ismail and Panni 2008).
A lot of companies ensure that their operations are in line with the standards of what is ethical. Primark is a business that operates in over 200 stores in the United Kingdom, Spain, Ireland, Netherlands, Belgium, Portugal, and Germany. The company’s expansion comes from meeting the needs of the customers while persisting to expand more into new markets and territories.


All over the world, consumers are increasingly becoming ethically concerned and social conscious. They want to buy and use products that encourage environmental and social responsibility, and reject products that are made from animals such as shoes and fur coats (Cho and Krasser 2011). In addition, commercial survey offers empirical data that confirms the trend in ethical consumerism. Cho and Krasser (2011) claims that not so much is known concerning what impacts consumers’ motivation for their choices of ethical consumption. As a matter of fact, ethical consumerism is recognized as a complex phenomenon associated with a number of potential factors.
Little is known about what influences consumers' motivation for ethical consumption choices. Ethical consumerism, in fact, is a complex phenomenon related a number of possible factors. Literature focusing on consumer behaviour posits that consumers can be motivated to conduct socially conscious consumption decisions on the grounds of what impact their behaviour may have on people and the environment (Cho and Krasser 2011). These consumers are motivated by the universal result or effect their decision might have. Ethical consumerism encompasses a conscious choice to utilize products selectively on the grounds of moral and personal values and beliefs (Cho and Krasser 2011). Ethical consumerism is a response to the products’ cultural looting of mental and public space and the company’s hijacking of political power (Cho and Krasser 2011). The concept of ethical consumerism involves a broader range of concerns that can contribute significantly to the difficulty of intricateness decisions.
There are three different types of ethical consumerism – buycotts, boycotts, and discursive. Boycotting is the act of not choosing or rejecting products that do not meet certain social and ethical standards (Cho and Krasser 2011). Buycotting is choosing products related to such standards (Cho and Krasser 2011). Lastly, discursive does not concentrate on affecting corporate practice by purchasing or not purchasing products. Instead, it targets weak points in the company, such as image, reputation, brand name, and logo (Cho and Krasser 2011).
Companies have a responsibility to conduct in the society. Ethics in business are rules of principles and conducts and behavioural patterns in business transactions that encompass doing what is right. Part of this accountability is to care for the broader community involved in the process, including all workers, all over the world.


Primark lives up to the expectations of suppliers and has a major concern to conduct business ethically. Primark is clear about where it lies on ethical business. As a global brand with a worldwide supply chain, Primark believes that it has an obligation to function ethically. Primark hold onto this obligation as a chance to be a powerful force for good. The company is focused on giving the best conceivable value to clients, yet not to the detriment of the individuals who manufacture the items. This implies verifying that, all through the supply chain, Primark's products are fabricated under great conditions and the workers in the manufacturing plants are dealt with fairly.
Primark accords its values with its parent Associated British Foods. These qualities shape Primark's associations with its partners. Partners are people and groups who have an enthusiasm for or are influenced by a business. They may be shareholders or workers, or community and the government. Critical business standards for Primark incorporate human rights and establishing rules for suitable states of livelihood in its suppliers' processing plants. Primark has more than 600 suppliers in 16 nations. These organizations offer work opportunity to more than 700,000 labourers in three major continents. Primark is focused on ensuring that its partners, both production lines and suppliers, act dependably towards their workers.
Generally, materials are fabricated in low-wage and high manual capacity economies. Industrial facilities in nations such as Chin or India may supply a scope of retailers and brands, delivering products as per every individual retailer's details. In these circumstances, the supply chain sets the same pay rate to workers. No less than 95% of the manufacturing plants supplying Primark additionally create for other high end retailers. Primark attempts to guarantee ethical sourcing in various ways. It possesses an Ethical Trade Director, whose part is to ensure Primark products are supplied ethically and who directs a group of ethical directors and management situated in the major sourcing nations. Primark is part of the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI), a universal union of organizations, exchange unions and nongovernmental groups, working in collaboration to enhance the lives of workers over the globe.
Primark has the capacity to provide value at low costs on the grounds that its plan of action is in light of increased sales volumes and reduced retail margins with minimal promotion. The organization holds expenses around purchasing huge amounts of items and getting a charge out of the economies of scale because of purchasing in volume. Moreover, retail costs are maintained low through lean generation and productive operational practices. For instance, utilizing off-season manufacturing period for production implies that the expenses are lower compared to the expenses during peak season. This is useful for Primark; however it additionally implies industrial facility workers getting work and paid when they may not generally have been required. Hence, its practices are both productive and ethical. Primark meets expectations nearly with the suppliers and production lines that deliver its products. It gives training to suppliers, plants and its own consumers in order for them to comprehend ethical issues.
The function of Primark purchasers is essential in serving to support ethical practices in business. At the point when selecting new suppliers and manufacturing plants, Primark obliges them to experience a selection process. This empowers Primark to know if working conditions are suitable or if upgrades are important before the supplier can be affirmed. All Primark suppliers are likewise subject to exhaustive free reviews and subsequent visits to verify that the supplier is keeping up ethical practices. This includes a review of work guidelines. An auditor is somebody that checks industrial facilities to guarantee that Primark's set of accepted rules is being actualized inside the production line. This incorporates, for instance, checking that the manufacturing plant has the right fire security device and that staff has been prepared how to utilize it, to ensure that all workers get the wages and profits they are qualified for. Primark seeks to operate synergistically with its suppliers when auditors recognize issues of resistance against the set of accepted rules. Often, manufacturing plants need assistance and training to execute changes to their industrial facilities that are permanent and successful.


The objective of the survey is to determine the behaviours of consumers when purchasing items. Ten respondents participated in the study. The results of the survey showed that 20% that most respondents purchase clothes once in every 15 days. On the other hand, 20% of the participants purchase clothes once a week, once a month, and once every three months. When participants were asked how much they spend on clothes, 40% said they spend less than a hundred British Pounds.
When participants were asked if they personally purchase their clothes, 80% of them said yes. One participant opted not to answer the question and one participant claimed not buying clothes personally. When asked whether they like purchasing clothes from shopping malls, 80% said yes while 20% said no.
When participants were asked how much of the clothes they purchase were on sale or on discount, 60% claimed that most of their clothes were bought on sale. Furthermore, 90% of the participants consider price as an important determining factor in their decision to buy clothes.
When participants were asked if they find branded clothing more valuable, 60% said yes. On the other hand, majority of the participants consider the service afforded by the stores to their customers.
Majority of the participants are also considering the ambiance and the location of the store each time they purchase an item. Lastly, majority of the participants believe that good quality of clothes is mostly available at shopping malls.


Primark is a dynamic, developing brand that gives shoppers design items more than the value of their money. The organization has a viable inventory network, gathering together manufacturing plants in China, Turkey, Bangladesh, India, and other nations, with retail outlets in the United Kingdom, Ireland, and other places in Europe. A key standard of Primark's business practice is to ensure that it furnishes its customers with quality for-articles of clothing they purchase, while keeping up ethical manufacturing principles. This includes paying for independent reviews of all its industrial facilities and working with suppliers to address issues in a practical way.


Customer buying behaviour is influenced by various factors. This often includes the price of the product, the ambiance and the location, and the customer service. In addition, transparency is seen as a significant process in influencing people’s behaviour in buying. Suppliers are encouraged to be transparent to earn the trust of consumers. Ignoring ethical behaviour would lead to a reduction in brand reputation. Moreover, consumers could transfer to rival companies if they perceive unethical behaviours in the business.


Cho, S. and Krasser, A. 2011. What Makes Us Care? the Impact of Cultural Values, Individual Factors, and Attention to Media Content on Motivation for Ethical Consumerism. International Social Science Review, [online] 86(1-2), p.3. Available at: [Accessed 21 Mar. 2015].
Ismail, H. and Panni, M. 2008. Consumer Perceptions on the Consumerism Issues and Its Influence on Their Purchasing Behavior: A View from Malaysian Food Industry. Journal of Legal, Ethical and Regulatory Issues, [online] 11(1), p.43. Available at: [Accessed 21 Mar. 2015].

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