headline press information

Date 30th November 2010 / www.procarton.com

Unilever commits to sustainable sourcing of paper packaging


Unilever has recently published a sustainable paper and board packaging sourcing policy as part of its commitment to double the size of the business while reducing its environmental impact. The policy outlines the company’s ambitious goal to work with its suppliers to source 75 per cent of its paper and board packaging from sustainably managed forests or from recycled material by 2015, rising to 100 per cent by 2020.

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The commitment makes Unilever the first global FMCG company to commit to sourcing all of its paper and board packaging from sustainably managed forests or recycled material within a clearly defined timeframe.

Unilever will buy paper packaging that comes either from well managed forests or from recycled material, whichever is best in order to ensure product quality. For the company’s requirements for paper from virgin sources, preference will be given to supplies delivered through the Forest Stewardship Council certification scheme. Unilever will also accept other national schemes under the framework of international Forest Management Certification standards, such as PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification), provided they comply with the policy’s implementation guidelines.

The move means the logos of the acceptable forest management certification schemes will begin to appear on the packaging of Unilever’s portfolio of brands as progress is made towards reaching the target, and in order to increase consumer awareness and promote the expansion of certified forests in the world. Unilever requires all suppliers to do a self-assessment and report on progress via an internet-enabled tool. The assessment data will be accessible to Rainforest Alliance for verification. Unilever will also audit its suppliers’ self-assessments on a regular basis using third-party auditors.

Marc Engel, Unilever’s Chief Procurement Officer, said: “As a leading consumer goods company, we buy considerable quantities of paper and board for packaging to ensure our products are protected and transported safely. As such it is important that we promote sustainable forestry practices and help combat deforestation and climate change through the responsible sourcing of these materials.

We are committed to working in partnership with all of our suppliers to progressively increase the proportion of paper and board packaging which comes from recycled materials, or sustainably managed forests, in order to achieve this ambitious target.”

Unilever is a founding member of the Sustainable Packaging Coalition, which has over 160 members, including packaging users, producers and retailers. Unilever is also a member of EUROPEN (the European Organisation for Packaging and the Environment), and the Consumer Goods Forum’s Global Packaging Project.


Source: Unilever

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Unilever Icecream Variation.

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Suzanne McEwen +43 1 218 6918 mcewen@procarton.com
Background Pro Carton is the European Association of Carton and Cartonboard manufacturers. Its main purpose is to promote the use of cartons and cartonboard to brand owners, the trade as well as designers, the media and politicians as an economically and ecologically balanced packaging medium.