Consum’actor

Scale level :
Definition :

The consum’actor is a consumer who reappropriates the act of consumption by using his purchasing power to protect the values and causes he defends. Through his action, he embodies the fight against the consumer society’s deviances dominated by acts of ostentatious purchases.

Consum’actor joins a critical movement regarding the globalized sectors and resistance against the influence of industry and large distribution. He wants to counterbalance this influence by favoring certain products far from the dictates of marketing and going as far as boycotting if he deems it necessary. ‘Voting with his trolley’ makes him a committed citizen and his act a political commitment.

Concerned with social justice, the consum’actor is interested in products of which he appreciates sustainable and equitable quality. His thoughtful purchases tend to support companies that propose an ethical and deontological approach, unlike those that rely on purely economic development.

The consum’actor questions the consequences of his purchases on the environment and more generally the harmful effects that can cause (over)consumption (depletion of natural resources, pollution, threatened biodiversity, etc …). The consumer chooses products that are little processed, local and respectful of the environment. He seeks a form of sobriety by only acquiring what he really needs.

With the increase in human activity on ecosystems, consum’action is part of a sustainable development perspective and agroecological transition. Not only is this driven by technical innovations but also by a social movement characterized by a set of actors who mobilize for food sovereignty and security.

Today’s consum’actor can take a stand on all or part of these technical and social issues. Tomorrow’s consum’actor will make them evolve so as to face climate change.

Published on 10 February 2020

Bibliographic references :

Dockrill P. 2016. Consumers have a bigger impact on the environment than anything else, study finds. Science alert.com.

Friedman M. 1996. A positive approach to organized consumer action: The ‘’buycott’’ as an alternative to the boycott. Journal of Consumer Policy. Vol 19, pp 439-451.

Klein J. G.,  Smith N. C.,  John A. 2002. Exploring Motivations For Participation in a Consumer Boycott. Advances in Consumer Research. Vol 29,  pp 363-369.

Nielson L., A. 2010. Boycott or boycott? Understanding political consumerism. Journal of Consumerism Behavior. Vol 9 (3), pp. 214-227.​

To quote this definition or part of it :
Aurélie Gordon, Mathilde Bouchard, Valérie Olivier. 2020. Consum’actor : Definition. Dictionnaire d'Agroecologie, https://dicoagroecologie.fr/en/encyclopedia/consumactor/

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