When manufacturers and retailers donate their surplus consumer products to In Kind Direct they are then distributed to UK charities working in the UK and overseas. It helps ensure that everyone has access to life’s essentials and that no usable product goes to waste. The donor companies are giving their products for social good. Through In Kind Direct, the charities’ overhead costs are reduced and essential goods are provided to beneficiaries who would otherwise be unable to afford them.
Instead of sending their surplus products to landfill or selling them to discounters and liquidators, some donor companies choose to donate the products they have paid to manufacture/sell, to help deliver on their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) goals and boost their brand.
Many manufacturers and retailers are driven by a purpose which goes beyond generating profit. They are interested in both being a financially sustainable and commercial business to benefit their shareholders and stakeholders, but also helping to address issues relevant to their consumers and the wider society. Product giving is a simple process that runs alongside existing charitable initiatives which demonstrates clear action towards this purpose.
According to PwC and In Kind Direct product giving research in 2017, 64% of FMCG CEOs say that CSR is now core to their business rather than being a standalone programme. CSR and sustainability initiatives are increasingly central to business strategy.
Product giving can be a strategic tool that will help to achieve existing CSR and sustainability goals. For example, to enhance its reputation for sustainability, a business could use product giving to demonstrate that no products go to waste in their business. This would also prove that the business is implementing circular economy principles, so product giving has far-reaching corporate, social and environmental benefits.
Product giving can also build customer loyalty and lead to long term profitability – the recipients of the donated products are introduced to the brand and familiarised with it, which will potentially make them customers in the future. Also, the positive social impact created by product giving enhances brand reputation and employee engagement. Aimee Goldsmith, Head of Communications, Procter & Gamble Northern Europe, said “product-giving through In Kind Direct not only helps charities & their beneficiaries across the UK but it’s also a strong component of our employee engagement programme helping to instil pride in the company through supporting the communities in which we live and work.”
In stark contrast, selling surplus stock to liquidators can have a negative impact on future sales whilst also adversely affecting customers’ perception of the brand. Working with In Kind Direct and its network of pre-vetted charities ensures that brands are protected and products go to where they are needed the most.
If you work for a company that makes or sells consumer products, please look at our website and join the product giving revolution in 2019.