In view of rising and volatile prices for materials, companies have realised that it is in their own interest to improve material efficiency. Global environmental problems and concern about the availability of raw materials are also making material efficiency and natural resource productivity a political issue. The German Federal Government is keen to increase its support for measures to enhance material efficiency in companies. The most important instruments are grants for information material and consultancy services and assistance with loans. Using a survey of companies conducted as part of the IW panel survey on structural change, the authors show that approximately every third affected enterprise in the manufacturing and in the service sectors is interested in the assistance offered. However, half of all firms reject the offer of consultancy. Among small enterprises those already active in this field but without previous experience of consultancy can be expected to be the most open to offers of assistance in increasing material efficiency.