Sustainability continues to be a hot topic in the CPG industry and rightfully so. Companies understand that sustainability is also a marketable differentiator which impacts consumer purchasing decisions. In fact, the 25 largest CPG companies have set ambitious goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through packaging initiatives. However, these packaging initiatives are a bit constrained because of our current recycling systems’ limitations. The constant influx of new and hard-to-manage materials in the waste stream has posed problems for facilities with aging infrastructure.

Another sustainability lever for CPG companies to consider is minimizing food waste. Food waste is a huge problem…


In ancient civilizations like the Egyptian and Roman empires, people wore wigs made either from human hair, sheep’s wool or vegetable fibers. Human and animal hair are still used for wigs and hair extensions but along the way, synthetic hair wigs and extensions went from being made out of plant fibers to being manufactured from petrochemical-derived materials such as polyester, acrylic, and PVC that are not biodegradable. This is a huge environmental problem because millions of pounds of synthetic hair end up in landfills annually, where it could take roughly 500 years to decompose. …


Over fifty billion dollars. That is what the feminine hygiene market is expected to reach by 2027. This is a massive figure when you realize that the sector is still underserved — only 4% of healthcare R&D goes towards women’s health. Although menstruation products have evolved since Kimberly-Clark introduced Kotex sanitary napkins in the 1920s, much of these product innovations have been driven by upstart brands like This is L (2019 P&G acquisition P&G), Queen V (2021 Reckitt Benckiser acquisition), Thinx, and more. Despite these advances, feminine care still carries a stigma in many parts of the world. …


Photo by Jia Jia Shum; @shumjiajia

Nowadays it feels like there is a “healthier” alternative to everything we once indulged in. The “got milk?” dairy campaigns of yesteryear have been overtaken by plant-based dairy alternatives and low-calorie ice-creams are outselling mainstays like Ben & Jerry’s and Häagen-Dazs. Prior to the pandemic, most people were already invested in their health but given the public health scare we’ve been through, more people are interested in consuming foods and beverages that benefit their immunity, metabolism, and mental state.

This heightened health-consciousness also means consumers are rethinking alcohol consumption. Low and no alcohol products have grown are expected to grow…


When I first started working in consumer packaged goods (CPG) in the mid-2000s, brands were obsessed with appealing to Millennials. Fast-forward to today, Generation Z (Gen Z) is now whose wallets brands are chasing. And understandably so. A recent report from Bank of America estimates that by 2031, Gen Zers will surpass millennials in income and have a spending power of $33 trillion dollars. Although both generations have similarities, the differences will prove to be a large opportunity for CPG companies who want to build loyalty with Gen Z consumers.

They are the largest, most diverse and the most educated…


At the height of the pandemic last year, gyms were mandated to shut down and most Americans had to find alternative ways to keep moving and work up a sweat. Some built makeshift gyms at home and others turned to outdoor activities such as cycling and hiking, or a combination of home workouts. But as most people get vaccinated and gyms re-open, will the interest in outdoor activities decrease? I don’t foresee a slowdown. A few reasons why:

  • Focus on healthier lifestyles: Driven in part by the rising cost of healthcare, Americans are being more preemptive about their health and…

As healthcare costs in the U.S. continue to rise, people are taking matters into their own hands to help limit doctor visits. Americans are fully embracing self-care activities that not only promote a healthy life but bring them joy and comfort. This shift has transformed the self-care space from a $10 billion industry into a $450 billion market over the last six years. And the industry shows no signs of slowing down as data reveals 88% of U.S consumers actively practice self-care.

Self-care is everything people intentionally do for their mental, physical, and emotional well-being. This all-encompassing approach means consumers…


If ever there was a year to feel stressed and anxious, it was 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic, social injustice protests, and political uncertainty put many on an emotional and economic rollercoaster which unsurprisingly puts a burden on people’s mental wellbeing. Even before this tumultuous year, anxiety disorders affected 18% of Americans.

Each person has their own way of coping with disorders. Some rely on medication regimens such as benzodiazepines (eg. Xanax, Valium) or antidepressants that help stabilize mood and relieve stress but they come with the risk of addiction or a host of side effects ranging from fatigue to blurred…


Right before I started my online search for faux plants, my wife shouted out a set of prerequisites: “Read the reviews first”, “See if there are any reviews that include an actual picture” “Make sure some reviewers say it looks real”. She essentially wanted me to validate the pending purchase through social proof, a key feature in social commerce.

How it started

Yahoo first started using the phrase “social commerce” back in 2005 with its introduction of collaborative shopping tools that let shoppers create, discover, and share product information. The phrase was ahead of its time since the infrastructure and…


Back in 2008, Walmart launched a Packaging Scorecard, a software tool that grades packages on their environmental friendliness. The scorecard, which was part of Walmart’s company-wide sustainability initiative, aimed to reduce packaging in the retailer’s supply chain by 5% by 2013. I was working at Kraft Foods (now Mondelez) at the time and I recall an internal scramble to ensure packages for SKUs stocked at Walmart were up to snuff since the buyers from the world’s largest retailer were using the scorecard to help make purchasing decisions.

Nowadays, sustainability is not just a mandate that companies with purchasing power force…

Kofi Ampadu

Made in Ghana. Assembled in New York. Found World Wide.

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