UK consumers are the least willing in the world to pay for greener products, according to a global survey by TNS. While 59% of respondents to the consumer survey said they were happy to pay more for environmentally friendly products, this fell to 45% in the UK. The figure puts the UK at the bottom of the global league table in terms of willingness to pay a green premium.

When asked if they would seek out retailers that only sell environmentally friendly products, just 34% of UK respondents said yes, compared with 89% in Italy and 71% in Spain.

The results were “embarrassing” for Britain, said Andrew Czarnowski, MD of TNS UK. “In the UK people used to say they were in favour of green initiatives, but it looks as if, when push comes to shove, green is less of an issue,” he said.