Posted by Big Gav in unilever
The Guardian reports that Unilever are looking to make their large range of consumer goods a little more environmentally friendly - Unilever unveils ambitious long term sustainability programme.
Consumer goods group Unilever will today unveil an ambitious new sustainability plan that aims to double sales and halve the environmental impact of its products over the next 10 years.
The initiative will cover not just Unilever's greenhouse gas emissions, waste and water use – but the impact caused by its suppliers and consumers, from agricultural growers to the packaging and waste water produced by consumers of Unilever brands, which include Dove, Persil, Bertolli, Flora and PG Tips.
"More than two thirds of greenhouse emissions and half the water in Unilever products' lifecycle come from consumer use," said the company, "so this is a commitment on an unprecedented scale."
The Anglo-Dutch group also intends to improve the nutritional quality of its food products – with cuts in salt, saturated fats, sugar and calories – and link more than 500,000 smallholder farmers and small scale distributors in developing countries to its supply chain.
The group's new Sustainable Living Plan – to be launched simultaneously in London, Amsterdam, Delhi and New York – is the result of 12 months' planning. Chief executive Paul Polman told the Guardian that the plan was essential because "continuing to increase our environmental impacts as we grow our business is not viable".
He said he was "decoupling" growth from the group's environmental aims and that the changes constituted a "new business model".
Polman said it was essential that companies took responsibility for the damage they are doing to the planet as concerned consumers were starting to "vote with their wallets on responsible products".
"Consumers want more", he said. "They see food shortages, malnutrition and climate change, and governments are not addressing those problems. Companies that do this will get a competitive advantage. Those that do not will put themselves at risk."