Foresight Factory’s Josh McBain discussed the changing demographic and the opportunity that it provides for the garden industry, with a stronger focus on experiences rather than material possessions. This opens up the possibilities of making garden centres a more immersive experience that can appeal to a growing demographic where 88% of people aged 55 and over believe people should be responsible for their own health and wellbeing, and 75% look for innovative retailers.

Josh McBain said: “For many decades now we’ve seen an ongoing ageing population in the UK and that looks set to continue over the next 10 years. Essentially the changing age structure in the UK from 2016-2026 shows that the age group that shows the most increase in the amount of people by 2026, the vast majority of population growth over the next 10 years really is going to come from the older population – those aged 55 and over.” Mr McBain suggests that as life expectancy continues to

increase, the vast majority of the population will be made up of older people, and the only way to boost sales is to remember to cater to their needs which may not be as traditional as first imagined. He said: “Even today the average 60 year old in the UK will expect to live for further 22 years, and perhaps most importantly of those 22 years, on average 17 of those years will be lived with relatively few risk mobility issues, and this is important because it means there is less of an obstruction on the variable lifestyle and commercial behaviour.” Making references to last year’s fashion event by London College of Fashion, the first catwalk where only models aged 50 and above could take part, he suggested that growing impact that the older members of society are having upon our daily lives, and how this should be a consumer focus for garden centre retailers. Mr BcBain went on to mention that he believed experiential retail to be one of the largest trend areas in the retail industry, having

experiences in store would drive word of mouth, point of sales, and brand engagement. “We often find that many

retailers see experiences in store as very much the young person’s trend.”

However 83% of people aged 65+ and 75% of people aged 55-64 agreed with the statement ‘I don’t want to be defined by my age’, suggesting that retailers shouldn’t stop opening up new experiences aimed specifically at young people, because older consumers

are actively looking for innovative retailers and more information on general health and mindfulness trends, as well as a new shopping experience like immersive technology. With latest Office for National Statistics data showing that in terms of the average weekly consumer spend, the older age groups spend more on average each week, Mr McBain said: “Not only [is the older demographic] an important customer base today but this will only grow more important over the coming years.”

COO-VAR’s Pro-Netic water- based magnetic chalkboard paint is a dual-purpose coating that can produce a surface to which magnets will attach and is also suitable for use as a chalkboard. Pro-Netic provides a matt black finish which can create a magnetic notice board on suitably prepared wall areas, wood, MDF or plasterboard. For use in the home, schools, offices, restaurants and hotels. Can be over coated to achieve other colours and is water based, fast drying and low odour, says Coo-Var.

PLASTIKOTE says consumers love its new decorative spray paint, Chalk. A high-quality spray paint, Chalk is easy to apply and gives an ultra matt chalky finish. It gives a vintage look to furniture, mirrors, picture frames and ornaments. Available in a range of seven stylish colours, it’s perfect for anyone with an interest in interior design, says Plastikote. Chalk has been specially developed so that it can also be easily sanded when dry to give a distressed finish. Chalk’s low solvent content and gentle spray mist action means it can be used indoors and on virtually any surface.


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