Reducing waste is a high priority on the road to sustainability in the beauty industry. There are various types of waste: Waste that leaves a building through trash collection or drain disposal. Most of this waste is produced during manufacturing and considered “chemical waste”. Disposal of chemical waste can be included with the recycling of hazardous waste and typically given to a company that specializes in hazardous waste. The other type of waste includes that from the actual product, unused product as well as the packaging left over after the consumer is finished using the product. Achieving zero waste is the ultimate goal and this requires looking at a company’s practices on a holistic level.
The main ways to divert waste are through substitution/prevention, reuse, recycling or energy recovery solutions.
The first step requires taking a step back and assessing a company’s purchasing practices and supplier relationships. A company can make a big impact from the beginning by substituting more environmentally friendly raw materials and energy sources for those currently being used.
At this stage, it’s important to make sure that suppliers are also adopting environmentally friendly practices. If the actual production and distribution of the raw materials, etc. are not green friendly, then the purchasing of that item is not sustainable. Second, the redesigning of the packaging product needs to be considered. By rethinking packaging from a sustainable and Cradle to Cradle perspective, the amount of energy, water and material used per product is reduced and less waste ultimately produced. For more information on packaging, please visit our Sustainable Packaging page.
Reusing and Recycling waste is becoming more popular among cosmetic companies. Consumers return used packaging to original company and can be rewarded in terms of points or a new product. This benefits not only the company but also the consumer. It allows the company an opportunity to be responsible for its products while promoting sustainability on the consumer end.
Green Best Practices:
Related Past Articles
Beauty Packaging No Longer Need to Come at the Expense of Our Oceans
By Hannah Furlong, 26-April-2016
Full article: http://goo.gl/TkFOVy
Consumers Hate Packaging Waste
By Leslie Rose, Beauty Packaging Magazine, 30-April-2015
Full article: http://www.beautypackaging.com/contents/view_online-exclusives/2015-04-30/consumers-hate-product-waste/
Unilever Launches “Rinse, Recycle, Reimagine” in partnerships with Keep America Beautiful and the Ad Council to rally Americans to Clean up their Act in the Bathroom
PR Newswire, 30- April- 2015
Plastic Industry Launches Program to Eliminate Waste
Beauty Packaging Magazine, 22-September-2014
Full article: http://www.beautypackaging.com/contents/view_breaking-news/2014-09-22/plastic-industry-launches-program-to-eliminate-waste/