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PRESS RELEASE - Following biological clues to better materialsMIT Professor Brad Olsen creates bioinspired and biofunctional materials for widely diverse applications.
SUPPLY CHAIN - Last week, Perdue Foods announced that it has discontinued the use of antibiotics at all of its chicken hatcheries, another step in setting a standard that defines the responsible use of antibiotics in poultry production. While the company, with farms based in Salisbury, Maryland, says it has not used antibiotics for growth promotion in its poultry since 2007, it does use an animal-only antibiotic to control an intestinal parasite, and to treat and control illness within unhealthy flocks.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - Sustainable chemical technology company Genomatica has published the results of a major survey of sustainability issues in the mainstream chemical industry that shows the topic is now considered a high priority in the field, with Genomatica itself ranking alongside industry giants such as BASF and Dow that come to mind when respondents think of those leading the charge.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - Carbios, a French green chemistry company specializing in technologies enabling the recovery of plastic waste and the production of bio-polymers, has announced a significant step forward in the development of its controlled biodegradation process for disposable soft plastics.With its new process, Carbios says it obtained completely biodegradable plastic material in domestic conditions. The material, comprised of an oil-based polymer and an enzyme, loses 50 percent of its mass in 15 days and completely biodegrades in less than three months, making Carbios’ technology an effective potential industrial answer to legal concerns around how to better control the end of life of disposable and short-life plastics.
SUPPLY CHAIN - Irish retail giant Primark, which operates across the UK and across Western Europe, today joined the growing number of brands committing to eliminate all hazardous chemicals from its supply chain as part of Greenpeace’s global Detox campaign.
BEHAVIOR CHANGE - Subway announced late last week that it is removing a curious ingredient from its bread — a compound known as azodicarbonamide (or E927), whose other common uses include increasing the elasticity of items such as shoe soles and yoga mats, according to CNN. Though Subway insists the compound is safe and it is commonly added to all types of breads, the company’s decision to remove it comes after pressure from blogger Vani Hari, otherwise known as “Food Babe,” who started a petition to have Subway eliminate the chemical.
SUPPLY CHAIN - This post first appeared on CSRwire's TalkBack blog on January 7, 2014.This is part two of the Creating Sustainable Apparel Value Chains series. Read part one: Transforming the Industry.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - Procter & Gamble announced this week that it will eliminate phosphates from all of its laundry detergents — which include brands such as Tide, Ariel, Cheer, Gain, Ace and Bold — by the end of 2015. The company says the goal of the change is to provide consumers with superior cleaning performance while eliminating the harmful effects of the chemicals on the environment.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - The states of Washington and California are breaking new ground by providing consumers with information on potentially harmful chemicals in the products they buy and use on a daily basis. Washington’s focus is on products meant for children; California’s law spotlights cosmetics.
SUPPLY CHAIN - … Or, as Greenpeace refers to its apparent victory: “How to Detox a fashion brand in 14 days, 6 cities and 10,000 tweets.”British luxury fashion brand Burberry has responded to recent allegations by Greenpeace that some of its clothing contains hazardous chemicals by committing to remove all such substances from its operations by 2020.
MARKETING AND COMMS - Hazardous chemicals have been found in children’s clothes and shoes made by major brands including Disney, Burberry and adidas, according to a new report, A Little Story About the Monsters in Your Closet, released yesterday by Greenpeace East Asia.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - With the holidays fast approaching, many of us are scrambling to make last-minute purchases for friends and family. As items cross the check-out counter, products enter our lives carrying with them a chemical footprint that is often overlooked. While no overarching labeling scheme reveals the chemical makeup of most products, we can cheer some inspiring activity moving us toward toxin-free consumer products in the future. We may not see immediate changes in product chemistry this holiday season, but there is reason to hold onto hope for next year’s shopping list.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - Do you read the ingredient labels of your products? Here are some from a popular baby shampoo:“Purple paraben, quarternium-15, sorbitan laurate…,” rattles off Annie Leonard, co-director of The Story of Stuff Project, during the most recent episode of their “Good Stuff” podcast, which discussed green chemistry.Now, what do those ingredients mean? Where do they come from? If companies are allowed to sell them on the shelves, is that not an indication that they are safe to use? What about the ingredients that aren’t listed … and what does “fragrance” really mean?
BEHAVIOR CHANGE - San Francisco-based EOS Climate, which incentivizes the complete life cycle management of harmful refrigerants, on Tuesday announced the launch of its Refrigerant Asset System™ (RAS), the first cross-sector business model that focuses on refrigerants as assets.
PRODUCT, SERVICE & DESIGN INNOVATION - Target today announced an important step toward increasing product transparency, which the company says it hopes will lead to more sustainable and innovative products.
WASTE NOT - The thousands of tons of waste seashells created by the edible seafood sector are being used to treat wastewater in a new project undertaken by researchers at the University of Bath in the UK.Dr Darrell Patterson, from the University’s Department of Chemical Engineering, used waste mussel shells to create what he says is a cheaper and more environmentally friendly way of ‘polishing’ wastewater, which could remove unwanted substances such as hormones, pharmaceuticals or fertilizers.
MARKETING AND COMMS - On Tuesday, the Center for Environmental Health (CEH) revealed independent testing finding a cancer-causing chemical in 98 shampoos, soaps and other personal care products sold by major national retailers. The chemical, cocamide diethanolamine (cocamide DEA), a chemically modified form of coconut oil used as a thickener or foaming agent in many products, was listed by California as a known carcinogen last year. Products tested with high levels of cocamide DEA include shampoos made by Colgate Palmolive, Colomer, Paul Mitchell and many others. In addition, products marketed for children and a product falsely labeled as organic were found with the chemical, in violation of California law.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - Dow Microbial Control, a unit of The Dow Chemical Company, today introduced its Advanced Oxidation System (AOS) Certified technology for whole-room sanitization, which will provide food and beverage producers with an effective, chemical-free system for controlling surface and airborne pathogens. AOS Certified systems fill a need in the global food processing industry for a whole-room sanitization technology that quickly and safely reduces dangerous bacteria such as Listeria monocytogenes, E. coli and Salmonella, which pose serious health risks to consumers and a great financial risk for food manufacturers.
WASTE NOT - In a global economy infamous for consumer consumption of “things,” Ecovative delivers environmentally responsible solutions with “win-win-win” materials. These materials are a win for our planet, for people and for Ecovative's profit. To achieve these universal benefits, instead of accepting the first, the fastest or the easiest option for production, our approach is to start from scratch and ask how nature accomplishes a task.
CHEMISTRY, MATERIALS & PACKAGING - In the final week leading up to the Sustainable Brands Innovation Open (SBIO) finals presented by Target on June 5th, where the runner-up will be decided via live online public vote, we will feature daily articles introducing our semi-finalists. Today, meet Blue Box.Blue Box is positioning itself as an innovative method of cleaning industrial equipment with very little chemicals, at very low cost.