Over 50% will keep up tradition of buying Easter eggs this year: Repak
At least one in 10 will buy eight or more chocolate eggs, yet over two thirds (69%) don’t plan to spend more than €20
8 April 2020 | 0
Easter will be very different for all of us this year as those who are not frontline workers stay at home to help prevent the spread of Covid-19. However, over half (57%) of the Irish public plan to keep up the age-old tradition of buying chocolate eggs as Easter gifts for others. That’s according to the findings of new research by environmental not-for-profit organisation, Repak*.
In 2019, Irish residents spent €44 million on chocolate eggs and a record €208 million on groceries in the week leading up to Easter weekend**. With almost eight in 10 (79%) still planning to buy Easter gifts and people consuming more items at home than usual, household recycling bins will fill up quickly after the Easter bunny retires for another year.
This Easter, Repak is asking the public to continue to recycle all types of packaging and, in particular, packaging from Easter eggs and gifts. Cardboard boxes, plastic moulds, chocolate trays, clean tin foil and egg boxes can all be recycled, and should be placed in the bin clean, dry and loose.
The Repak study has revealed that while chocolate egg gifting remains a popular Easter tradition, choosing to buy alternative gifts is also becoming more common. A fifth of those surveyed (21%) plan to buy no gifts for Easter, with another fifth (22%) looking beyond chocolate for Easter present options to give their loved ones.
Reasons for buying alternative gifts to chocolate vary, but a quarter (26%) say they are doing so to be more eco-conscious and gift items that are accompanied by less packaging than chocolate eggs. This eco-conscious mindset is particularly strong among females and younger respondents. Another 41% said they will buy alternative gifts for health-conscious reasons, with half of Dubliners (50%) citing health as the reason why they won’t be satisfying anyone’s sweet tooth this year.
A third (34%) of Irish residents said they planned to dish out between €11 and €20 on gifts, despite one in 10 planning to buy eight Easter eggs or more. Older generations are inclined to spend more, with those polled aged between 45-54 willing to spend over €75 or more on chocolate. Although a whopping 92% said they would prefer to receive Easter eggs that are accompanied by fully recyclable packaging, other factors such as value for money (37%) and type of chocolate (36%) are more important than recyclable packaging (10%) when choosing what chocolate eggs to buy.
The shelf life of a chocolate egg
The research findings suggest that there are a lot of chocoholics amongst the Irish public, but 82% of respondents agree that the date that chocolate eggs typically go on sale in shops is too early for them, with this sentiment strongest among the over 55s (90%). Perhaps unsurprising then that almost six in 10 (59%) say that they buy too many chocolate eggs and that it would be easier to manage the volume they purchase if these went on sale later.
Waste not, want not
Almost a third (31%) of those surveyed will keep chocolate Easter eggs for over a month if they don’t consume them over the Easter weekend, to either eat as they are or perhaps transform into another tasty treat. Women (38%) tend to keep chocolate eggs longer than men (25%). However, 24% consume their chocolate eggs within the week, suggesting a significant volume of recyclable chocolate egg packaging in recycling bins just after Easter weekend.
“Every year, we see an increase in packaging waste generated over the Easter period, and this year we expect a similar trend,” said Séamus Clancy, CEO of Repak. “We are asking everyone to continue recycling and play their part in ensuring we continue to protect our environment at this difficult time.
The CEO said the organisation especially wished to thank Repak waste operators who are “working hard and providing an essential service to ensure all household bins are collected nationwide during this very difficult time”.
For more information on best practice recycling behaviour as well as a full list of household items that can and can’t be recycled, visit mywaste.ie.
*(Source: Refers to a research study survey of 1,000 Irish residents conducted by iReach in March 2020)
**(Source: According to Kantar data 2019, sourced here – https://www.irishtimes.com/business/retail-and-services/irish-consumers-spent-44m-on-easter-eggs-as-grocery-sales-hit-new-record-1.3883643)