Over the past fiscal year, more than 99.35 percent of all materials entering Procter & Gamble’s (P&G) plants were used in products and through recycling, reuse, and conversion of waste to energy, according to the company’s 2013 Sustainability Report.
Additionally, more than 50 of the Company’s global sites now send zero manufacturing waste to landfill, including every site in Germany. Since 2010, P&G says it has reduced manufacturing waste by 56 percent per unit of production — more than double the company’s original goal.
The 15th annual report, published Monday, shares progress in P&G’s sustainability focus areas: Conservation of Resources, Renewable Resources, Worth from Waste, Comforts of Home and Health and Hygiene. This year, P&G reported absolute reductions in waste, water, CO2 and energy — all four of the Company’s major manufacturing footprints.
Through consumer education and partnerships with washing machine suppliers, P&G says it helped enable the number of global laundry loads washed in cold water to increase from 38 percent to 50 percent. Hot water washes are the company’s largest energy footprint, so enabling cold-water washes with brands such as Tide Coldwater and Ariel Cool Clean represents a significant opportunity.
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P&G’s Oxnard, California site reduced water use by nearly 25 percent, which will result in a cost savings of more than $900,000 annually, according to the report.
P&G says it also committed to convert close to twenty percent of its North America for-hire transportation network to natural gas powered trucks over the next two years. Some brands that will now be delivered by natural gas powered trucks include Bounty, Charmin, Dawn, Gain, Downy and Tide. This will result in a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 5,000 metric tons per year — the annual equivalent from 1,000 passenger vehicles.
The company says it helped improve life for more than 60 million people in need, exceeding its annual goal of 50 million. Through the P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water Program, the company says it shared its six billionth liter of clean drinking water with a family in Myanmar.
“P&G’s commitment to meeting our sustainability goals year over year not only positively impacts people and the environment, but continues to evolve our business and support our top and bottom lines,” said Len Sauers, Vice President of Sustainability at P&G. “Every day, we’re inspired to develop innovative products that help people live more sustainably, while delivering cost savings through operational eco-efficiencies.”
P&G recently developed a new process to mold plastic that it claims is thinner, cheaper and more environmentally friendly than the current industry standard and could save the company $1 billion a year by using less plastic and different raw materials. The company says it will use the material for its own products and its patent applications, and also may sell it to other marketers from non-competitive package-goods players to automotive giants.