FEMALE CONSUMERS’ APPAREL DISPOSAL BEHAVIOUR IN THE SOUTH AFRICAN EMERGING MARKET CONTEXT
Free (open access)
281 - 285
NADINE CYNTHIA SONNENBERG, JOHANNA MARIA MAGDALENA MARX-PIENAAR, MARIA JACOBA STOLS
The apparel supply chain’s contribution toward pollution, natural resource depletion and excessive waste is cause for much concern. Sustainable strategies should form part of the entire apparel life cycle, but also more specifically the disposal stage, during which consumers should be encouraged to adopt waste reduction behaviours such as donating, recycling and/or reselling unwanted apparel. To date, this topic has received limited attention in developing countries such as South Africa, where disadvantaged communities are most adversely affected by environmental deterioration and overflowing landfills. This study thus aimed to explore and describe female consumers’ intent to dispose of apparel in a more sustainable manner within the local South African context. The non-probable sampling procedure purposively focused on females, because they tend to make the primary decisions regarding households’ unwanted apparel. A structured, self-administered web-based questionnaire was developed. Scale items were derived from prior empirical research, yet adapted and pre-tested to comply with local conditions. Responses were measured on a five point Likert type scale. The eventual sample consisted of 315 females between the ages of 18 and 65 years, who resided in the geographical scope of Gauteng, South Africa. Most respondents had some form of tertiary education (65%) and belonged to middle-income levels (54%). Exploratory factor analysis was conducted to reveal three factors, namely respondents’ intent to donate (M = 4.36), resell (M = 3.84) and reuse/recycle apparel (M = 4.05). The findings provide insight pertaining to respondents’ willingness to donate, perhaps more so than their inclination to resell or reuse unwanted apparel, due to various contextual circumstances. This may offer a basis for the development of waste reduction campaigns and intervention strategies in the apparel domain and direct future investigation in other emerging markets to establish consumers� willingness to engage in sustainable apparel disposal behaviour.
textile waste, apparel disposal, clothing reuse, consumer behaviour, emerging economy