Chemistry, Materials & Packaging
L’Oréal, Avery Dennison Collaborating to Reduce Environmental Impact of Labels

L’Oréal Americas and Avery Dennison have joined forces to identify and reduce the environmental impacts of packaging labels throughout the entire label lifecycle.

The collaboration has already produced a comprehensive Avery Dennison Greenprint™ assessment showing how thinner label materials can reduce environmental impacts. Avery Dennison Greenprint, a screening lifecycle tool launched in 2010, is the first of its kind in the label industry.

“We strongly believe in a sustainable supply chain, and this is ingrained in our business practices,” said David Wolbach, assistant vice president – Packaging Hair — L’Oréal Americas. “However, to achieve the ultimate goal of reduced-impact materials, we cannot work alone. It is essential that all facets of the value chain — material suppliers, printers, consumers, and recyclers — collaborate together to establish a clear and transparent, low-impact product stream globally.”

In 2013, L’Oréal announced its strategy to meet tomorrow’s sustainability challenges, called Sharing Beauty with All, in which the company committed to a number of sustainability targets, including the continued improvement of its packaging. In doing so, the cosmetics giant is considering packaging in the most comprehensive way possible, including labels and their precise environmental impact.

According to L’Oréal, the Avery Dennison Greenprint method allows a holistic look at the impact of its label materials, from raw material extraction to manufacturing to the label’s end-of-life. This approach is able to identify where the biggest environmental impacts lie and to devise strategies on how best to mitigate these impacts.

This method guided L’Oréal in its decision to transition the labels for some of its leading products to Avery Dennison’s Global MDO substrate, which is designed to enable significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, water consumption and waste generated in disposal.

“It is equally important that we have the necessary information available to understand the environmental impacts of the materials we are using,” Wolbach added. “This helps us immensely in our material selection process.”

By switching from Avery Dennison’s Global Co-Ex film product to Global MDO, L’Oréal says it has reduced environmental impacts from 7 percent to 19 percent across the categories of fossil material, water use, energy use, GHG emissions and solid waste.

“Improvements in sustainability require collaboration across the value chain, including converters recommending the right material to brands,” said Rosalyn Bandy, Avery Dennison Sustainability manager, North America. “L’Oréal’s leadership in improving the environmental profile of packaging is driving the value chain to work closer together.”

In January 2014, L’Oréal expanded its “Sharing Beauty with All” commitment to include a zero-deforestation pledge with regards to the sourcing of three key ingredients: palm oil, soya oil, and wood fiber-based products — another aspect of working toward sustainability of its packaging. The company’s goal is to source 100 percent of these renewable raw materials from sustainable sources by 2020.

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