Our economy depends upon ever increasing levels of consumption. Recent findings, drawing upon information from the Office of National Statistics suggest that our consumption of ‘stuff’ (e.g. food, fuel, cars, furniture) peaked in 2001 and is now trending to decline.
Concerns over an increasingly intensified farming sector also saw declines in fertilizer use and our daily calory intake is in decline (though counter to increasing incidents of obesity). The decline in consumption has taken place during strong economic growth. When viewed in isolation the results may suggest a decoupling of economic growth and consumption.
Experts remain cautious, pointing out that although consumption rates may be in decline, overall consumption levels remain unsustainable and the global economic model remains the same.
For Government, these results may require closer scrutiny to better understand the areas where the potential and appetite for technological advancement could lead to further decreases in consumption.