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More Henkel Corporate Reporting 2015
In order to reach our goal of sustainable development, we repeatedly scrutinize our conventional technologies and work on innovative solutions together with our suppliers and partners. These efforts span the entire value chain – from the extraction of raw materials to creative communication with consumers regarding product use. To implement this comprehensive approach, we systematically integrate our sustainability goals in every phase of the product life cycle. In line with our sustainability strategy, we create solutions that generate more value for our customers, consumers, and our company, while reducing our environmental footprint at the same time.
Sustainability is firmly anchored in our innovation process. This is ensured by integrated systems that provide information in a way that is user-friendly as well as time- and cost-efficient. We have, for example, systematically determined the carbon footprint for 165,000 product formulas already. Even in the early phase of raw material selection, the intelligent linking of databases permits our product developers to measure and control the effects that ingredients will have on the environmental product footprint. In this way, we purposefully promote the development of formulations with a smaller carbon footprint or with a higher share of readily biodegradable raw materials.
Environmental compatibility was also a guiding factor in our early decision to stop using solid microplastic particles (these are defined as particles from one micrometer to five millimeters) in the formulations of our cosmetic products. The plastic particles were used in certain rinse-off face care products. Even though cosmetic products account for only a very small percentage of any possible environmental impact, the new products we have launched in Europe since 2014 do not contain any solid microplastic particles. This means that we are ahead of the recommendation adopted in October 2015 by Cosmetics Europe (the European Personal Care Association) that solid microplastic particles should no longer be used in rinse-off cosmetic products from 2020 onwards. As of the beginning of 2016, all new Henkel cosmetic products of this type will be formulated worldwide without solid microplastic particles.
One of our goals is to achieve a better quality of life for as many people as possible within the limits of available resources. In addition to providing care for the hair, skin and teeth, our cosmetic products contribute primarily to the social and emotional aspects of quality of life. They help people to look well-groomed, emphasize their personal style and strengthen their self-esteem. Life-cycle analyses also show us that our consumers can influence the carbon footprint of our products to a very large extent as a result of their consumption behavior. More than 90 percent of the energy and water used with our rinse-off products is accounted for in the use phase. To raise our consumers’ awareness of this, we make use of the potential of digital media. For instance, our resource calculator allows consumers to find out online just how much their behavior can influence not only water use and the environmental footprint, but also the cost of bathing, showering, drying their hair, brushing their teeth and washing their hands. By providing this transparency, we aim to make sustainable lifestyles more attractive.
For communication with consumers to be as effective as possible, it is also important for consumers to be personally involved. As part of an international online competition, we called on creative talents all over the world to submit short videos with original and entertaining ideas for motivating people to conserve resources when taking a shower. The five winning videos have already been used in the communication channels of a large spectrum of retail partners in several countries. This not only illustrates the relevance of consumer involvement but also the close collaboration with our retail partners, who provide an important communication platform for addressing consumers directly.
As part of our commitment to sustainable development, we continuously improve our existing product portfolio. The new Taft Ultimate Hairspray has been formulated with a highly concentrated styling polymer. This means that the amount of product needed for hair styling can be applied with a much shorter spraying time. Less propellant gas and less alcohol are used each time. The result is that the amount of raw material input per application is reduced by 55 percent. In 2015, we achieved a savings potential of 1,500 metric tons of CO2.
Studies show that washing one’s hands regularly with soap provides an important basis for a healthy life. This is why our Dial brand in the USA supported the Global Handwashing Day for the second time. The idea is to increase awareness of the importance of hand washing as effective and low-cost protection from illness. In addition to this important social aspect, the Dial brand also considers the environment: The Dial Recycling Center shows consumers online which packaging materials are used for Dial products and where they can be recycled.
Our comprehensive advice for consumers ensures safe product use. Advice hotlines provide competent, quick and reliable information about product properties or ingredients. They have been set up in most countries where our products are sold. Consumers can also use our social media channels. All told, there were some eight million consumer contacts worldwide in 2015. Product-related feedback is documented in our quality assurance system and channeled into our ongoing product development process.
We also support our customers in the Hair Salon business in the proper use of our products through in-person training courses and web-based seminars. In September 2015, sustainability topics for the hairdressing salon were added to the advanced vocational training program of the International Schwarzkopf Academy. 25,000 hairdressers have already been reached this way.
Changing lives through the hairdressing trade – this is the idea of the “Shaping Futures” initiative that Schwarzkopf Professional launched in November 2010. In collaboration with the charitable organization SOS Children’s Villages, hairdressers and members of the Schwarzkopf Professional staff make it possible for young people all over the world to obtain training in basic hairdressing techniques. Since the initiative was launched, 1,200 young people in 25 countries have been trained through the volunteer engagement of almost 250 hairdressers and employees. In its fifth year, Schwarzkopf Professional also brought “Shaping Futures” to Germany. In collaboration with vocational schools in Hamburg and Nuremberg, young refugees are to be given an opportunity to find out whether hairdressing could be a career for them.
The Rapunzel Project promotes the Cold Cap technology, in which a plastic gel cap cooled to minus 30 degrees Celsius freezes the hair roots. This means that patients lose less hair while undergoing chemotherapy.
For the 10th year running, Schwarzkopf is an official partner to the “Tribute to Bambi” foundation, which helps children in need. In 2015, the focus of the children’s aid projects was also on the wellbeing of refugee children.
In collaboration with the non-profit organization The Rapunzel Project, Henkel supports cancer patients during chemotherapy through its US-American brand Kenra Professional. The unique Cold Cap technology has been designed to significantly diminish hair loss during chemotherapy. This initiative supplements the “look good feel better” international assistance program for cancer patients, which Beauty Care has been supporting since 2006.
The Henkel Sustainability#Master® reveals the sustainability profile of the new Syoss Renew 7 shampoo. The new platform formula developed for this product permits considerable ingredient savings versus its predecessor, along with improved product performance. It contains 16 percent less surfactants and 60 percent less cationic polymers. At the same time, the formulation has 10 percent more renewable ingredients, enabling the carbon footprint to be reduced by 18 percent overall. Product performance has also been improved, by 75 percent in regard to combability and by 80 percent with respect to repairing of split ends – highly relevant aspects for consumers.