Batesville says “families. . .are willing to pay more for products that help to minimize their environmental impact”

 

 

On October 30, 2023, Batesville issued a press release introducing the “Generations by Batesville” — “a new line of sustainable caskets designed to address the increasing demand for more enviornmentally-friendly products“.  You can see the press release here.

 

Of the new line of caskets, Jenn Parvin, SVP and Chief Marketing Officer for Batesville, makes this comment, “We conducted our own research to better understand consumer attitudes about sustainable funeral products, and found that families not only desire sustainable caskets, they’re also willing to pay more for products that help to minimize their environmental impact”.

 

To that end, and the press release points out, Batesville has introduced three caskets in the “Generations by Batesville” line which include The Promise, The Sincerity, and The Haven.  The press release states this about those units, “The company collaborated with experts to select the right materials and refine its manufacturing processes, investing in new equipment and tailoring processes as needed. From harvesting fast-growing hardwoods that are native to the U.S., to processing more of each tree to minimize waste and using contemporary water-based stains, every decision is intentional with an eye toward sustainability.” 

 

It is pointed out in the press release that Batesville, along with their own statistics, used information from “TheRoundup.org” in compiling the consumer statistics.  According to TheRoundup.org survey which you can access here:

  • Sustainable products have an overall 17% market share and a 32% share of growth
  • 78% of consumers feel that sustainability is important
  • 55% of consumers are willing to pay more for eco-friendly brands

 

In addition, Batesville points out in the press release that their own research shows evidence that promoting sustainability is good by these findings:

 

  • 65% of survey respondents believe sustainability is important when making a purchase
  • 42% are interested in purchasing a sustainable casket for a friend or loved one
  • More than 50% stated that they are willing to pay more for a sustainable casket

 

Tom Anderson
Funeral Director Daily

Funeral Dirctor Daily take:  My take on sustainability and/or environmentally conscious purchases is probably like a lot of people.  I’m all for it. . . . as long as the costs and ease of use are are not too high or too restrictive.

 

For instance, I drive almost 2,000 miles to our Florida residence in a gasoline powered automobile that allows me to do so in less than three full days of driving.  My assumption, is if I was doing so in a battery powered vehicle,  that it might take me up to a full week or more of driving because of the stopping and battery charging that would have to be done.  So, in that case, the use of an Electric Vehicle is too restrictive.

 

According to this recent article in Forbes Electronic Vehicle sales have slowed.  I’m guessing that convenience and cost are part of the problem.

 

So, what about death care and its costs regarding sustainability purchases?  Not death care specific, but TheRoundup.org survey results also show that:

  • 55% of global consumers are willing to pay more for products or brands that work to improve society and the environment. . . however, that is down from 58% the previous year.

 

And, I think the economic situation that we find ourselves in as consumers today makes a difference on our choices.  If high interest and high inflation cut into our personal spending situation, I do believe that more expensive “ecology or environmental” choices will suffer.

 

Batesville is to be commended for going this route for those who are passionate about sustainability.  My guess is that it is good long-range planning as a company.  And, there is a cohort of sustainable-minded people that will purchase these units.  However, from my point of view, I don’t see “sustainability” as a game changer in the casket business yet.

 

I still think that most practical Americans will look to function and value as their top priority in picking a casket.

 

By the Way:  Speaking of going to Florida.  One of my friends in Naples, Florida, has a golf course condo and will not be using it in January 2024.  I told him that there are many great people in the death care profession who might want a month in sunny Florida.  This is the golf community.  You can contact my friend at tbush@bell.insurance if you are at all interested in renting.

 

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1 Comment

  1. Ray Visotski on November 1, 2023 at 6:39 am

    I am reminded of the “families… are willing to pay more for copper caskets” promotion that rolled out during the late 1980s. My boss back then took the hook, line and sinker, resulting in us displaying 8 coppers out of 22 units. The idea was that we paid full wholesale to Batesville, but it was recommended that we set the retail price consistent with what we would sell a 16 gauge for. Makes sense to me, right? Maybe I’m just a cynical old man, but I’m thinking there might be some survey bias with respondents providing politically correct answers about sustainability so they feel good about themselves. Maybe Batesville needs to bring back their “cathodic protection” ads? 😉



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