Almost three-quarters of adults believe products should be designed with older people in mind, according to a charity survey.

The new findings come as Age UK showcases its Engage Business Network Accreditation Scheme at a free event in London on 15 March. Eligible products and services can come from any area and could range from food packaging to plumbing and bathroom products. The scheme aims to ensure that the design process has taken into account the needs and lifestyles of as many people as possible, making sure the older consumer is valued in order to improve later life.

Duncan Lewis, group marketing and development director at Age UK, said: "The over 50s currently represent a third of the population with nearly £300 billion worth of spending power this year [according to the Office for National Statistics], up from just over £250 billion only two years ago, so there is clearly an opportunity for the UK's businesses to be responding to older people's consumer needs."

Previous Age UK research highlighted the lack of accessibility that older people currently face to many products and services. Some 52% of over 65s agreed that those who plan services do not pay enough attention to their needs and 39% of the same age group thought businesses have little interest in their consumer requirements. The results have particularly important implications for UK businesses given that the number of people aged 60 or over is projected to rise by over 50% in the next 25 years.