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More Henkel Corporate Reporting 2015
The packaging for our consumer products fulfills many different functions: It ensures the hygiene and intactness of the products, protects them from external influences, provides space for necessary consumer information and often plays an important role in the purchasing decision through attractive packaging design and shelf appeal. In order to minimize the volume of waste, our packaging developers work constantly to design smart packaging that uses the least amount of material possible, and incorporates materials that can be recycled in public recycling systems.
In defining our targets for 2020, we also set targets for packaging. These include a reduction in packaging weight of 20 percent per sales unit as well as increasing the proportion of recycled PET (polyethylene terephthalate) in bottles and recycled aluminum in cans. Additionally, we want to reach more than 300 million consumers through more targeted information on recycling.
Throughout the company, we follow three basic principles – prevention, reduction, recycling. We specified these principles in our focus fields “less packaging and waste,” “better packaging” and “enabling the circular economy.”
In defining our new interim packaging targets for 2020, we concentrated on specific action priorities, building on the progress we made through 2015:
In 2015, Henkel introduced polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles from the Eco-Bottle series, which are made from 100-percent recycled PET materials. These bottles also fulfilled all of the required optical and mechanical specifications. As a result, up to 500 metric tons of new PET goods can be saved each year.
As part of our continuous packaging optimization efforts, we have developed an improved conditioner sachet for our hair coloring products. By reducing the thickness of the foil material, we have been able to reduce the amount of aluminum contained in the packaging by 25 percent. This made it possible to reduce the weight per sachet by 5 percent and the CO2 footprint by 25 percent.
Redesigning of the primary packaging of the Loctite SF 7850 hand cleanser has made it possible to save 24 percent CO2 and 18 percent weight per bottle. The new design of the 3-liter bottle (on the left; previous on the right) not only contributes to a more sustainable packaging solution, but also helps to save costs.
The packaging of our branded consumer products becomes household waste after use. Our packaging developers strive continuously to use less material without compromising on quality and stability. In Germany alone, we have thus been able to halve the volume of our packaging material since the 1980s.
Laundry detergents and household cleaners, as well as cosmetics and toiletries, pass into sewage systems after use. They are formulated by Henkel so that their use will not impact on the aquatic environment. Wastewater from industrial applications is pre-treated using state-of-the-art technology to remove harmful substances and professionally disposed of.
Transport packages are developed so that pallets and containers can be optimally packed. The requirements of transport safety and transport capacity utilization impose limits on reductions in transport and secondary packaging. The packaging materials we use must be sturdy in order to ensure that our products are not damaged during transport, and that our trucks and freight cars can be optimally loaded in terms of volume and weight.
For our industrial customers, we offer multi-use systems such as reusable transport containers and secondary packaging. One example is the return program for plastic containers (totes) used to transport industrial adhesives in the USA. Henkel established this program in 2010 in collaboration with the National Container Group (NCG). In keeping with the concept of “smarter packaging,” we offer ready-for-sale Dial hand soaps with displays on pallets and no secondary packaging.