P&G pledges to make 230 million bottles a year out of recycled plastic

Procter & Gamble (P&G) has today (23 July) announced a 'packaging overhaul', which will see some of the consumer good giant's flagship brands packaged in bottles made from recycled plastic.

Lenor and Unstoppable are among the P&G Fabric Care brands that will be packaged in recycled plastic bottles

Lenor and Unstoppable are among the P&G Fabric Care brands that will be packaged in recycled plastic bottles

Ariel, Dash, Lenor and Unstoppables will be among P&G’s Fabric Care brands to incorporate the new packaging, which is composed of up to 50% post-consumer recyclate (PCR).

The first new recycled plastic bottles are expected on shelves early next year.

P&G’s vision is to make 100% of its products and packaging from renewable and recycled materials, and the FMCG firm is now calling on global suppliers to accelerate the use of PCR in their packaging.

Gianni Ciserani, group president of Global Fabric and Home Care, said: “At P&G, when it comes to sustainability, we believe that actions speak louder than words. The increase in PCR in the packaging of our Fabric Care brands is a huge step in the right direction. We want to make it easier for consumers to choose sustainable brands whilst continuing to deliver superior product performance.”

“I’d like to continue this momentum in the future by partnering with organizations that can provide recycled materials globally. This will allow us to increase the amount of recycled plastic in more brands and geographies. When it comes to recycling, everybody has a part to play. Join us on this journey to eliminate packaging waste everywhere.”

Eco action

Through this initiative, the amount of incremental recycled material that P&G Fabric Care will use per year increases by 3.8 kilotonnes.

This is P&G Fabric Care’s fourth major environmental action in a period of just eighteen months. The company has already pledged to end the use of phosphates in its detergents globally; launched a community center in Kenya, and partnered with DuPont to introduce cellulosic ethanol into Tide detergent.

In its 2014 Sustainability Report, the multinational consumer goods firm has hit its waste-reduction target six years early, with just 0.4% of input materials disposed of as manufacturing waste to landfill across all its facilities - already beating the 2020 target of 0.5%. 

More than eight million tonnes of plastic waste enters the world’s oceans each year, with that figure continuing to increase.

Writing about plastic waste in a blog for edie earlier this week, James Greyson, who heads up the Blind Spot think-tank, said: “When it comes to creating practical possibilities for not making waste, people are super smart. But when it comes to making policy to install this practice throughout the economy, which has been the aim of circular economy for the past four decades, we’re consistently collectively stupid.

“The two possible outcomes for a piece of plastic - remaining as a resource or being dumped as ecological waste - are the same fates awaiting every product. Our economies and our futures depend on our ambition in arranging the right outcome.”

Plastic pledges

P&G’s announcement today is the latest in a line of big business commitments to tackle the issue of plastic waste.

Last month, to mark World Ocean Day, almost all of Britain's major retailers pledged to phase out harmful microbeads from their own-brand cosmetic and beauty products. And earlier this month, London retailer Selfridges stopped the sale of more than 400,000 single-use plastic water bottles in its shops as part of a campaign to reduce pollution of the oceans.

Yesterday saw the launch of Oceans Plastics Awareness Day, which enlists the support of organisations, communities and businesses to clean up beaches around the UK.

Luke Nicholls


| Circular economy | packaging | water


Waste & resource management
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