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Dove announces global move to shift to 100% recycled plastic bottles.

Beauty brand Dove is aiming to cut its use of virgin plastics in its products. ©Dove.

“We are passionately committed to being one of the brands making the biggest impact against plastic waste.”

Unilever-owned beauty brand Dove is making moves to produce 100% recycled plastic bottles and plastic-free packs for its iconic Dove Beauty Bar soaps.

Through a combination of alternative packaging materials, recycled plastic and investing in refill technology, Dove said it was driving a movement to create a new value for plastics and reduce the volume of plastic it produces.

New commitments are part of Dove’s (@Dove) 2025 commitment to reduce plastic waste, which will see the brand avoid the use of more than 20,500 tonnes of virgin plastic globally per year.

Dove has opted for long-term initiatives rather than one-off limited editions to ensure a greater and sustained impact, which will contribute to Unilever’s recently announced plastics goal.

According to the brand, plastic waste is one of the biggest global environmental and human health issues we face today: an issue being driven by a linear, single-use consumption model. To be part of the solution in creating a circular plastics economy, one where plastics are reused and recycled, globally Dove is following the ‘no, better, less’ framework.

Dove said that next year its iconic beauty bar single packs will be plastic-free globally, and development is underway to replace the plastic outer-wrap of its beauty bar multipacks with a zero-plastic material.

The brand will also start to launch new 100% recycled plastic (PCR) bottles where technically feasible, in Europe and North America, by the end of 2019 – across all ranges (Dove, Dove Men+Care, and Baby Dove). It is also continuing to search for solutions where recycled plastic is not currently technically feasible, including for caps and pumps.

Dove will also leverage the technology behind its new reusable, refillable, stainless steel format deodorant sticks: minim. According to the beauty brand, this technology minimises waste by radically reducing the amount of plastic required. The launch date is not yet confirmed, and launch markets are being decided, but work is well underway, Dove said.

The brand said that it is committed to leading the fight against plastic waste, and catalysing change within the industry and beyond. Through these initiatives, Dove calls for collaborative, accelerated action to help resolve the world’s plastic problem, shifting both commercial and consumer behaviour to turn the tide against plastic waste.

Speaking about the initiative, Marcela Melero, Dove Global Skin Cleansing Vice President, said: “At Dove, we believe in care that goes further: for our consumers as well as our planet. We are passionately committed to being one of the brands making the biggest impact against plastic waste. We know we’re not perfect, but we can’t afford to wait. We’re working to have the biggest positive impact we can, as quickly as we can, and empowering others to do the same.”

Richard Slater, Unilever Chief R&D Officer, added: “At Dove, we are proud to have more than 100 initiatives ongoing around the world dedicated to tackling plastic waste. But as one of the biggest beauty brands in the world, we have a responsibility to accelerate our progress even further. Today’s announcements are an important step in our work to transform how we produce, use and dispose of plastic packaging. By making this move, we aim to drive the global recycling industry to collect more waste plastic and make more recycled plastic available for use.”

Helen Bird, Strategic Engagement Manager at WRAP, explained: “As a founding member of The UK Plastics Pact, Unilever continue to work at pace on their commitment to eliminate unnecessary plastic, make plastic packaging recyclable, reusable or compostable and increase the use of recycled content, thereby reducing the need for new plastic production.

“Making these initiatives a success also rests with citizens; using refill and concentrate options and also recycling the packaging so that it can be remanufactured. Our research shows that while we are well accustomed to recycling items from the kitchen, there is often valuable plastic packaging missed from the bathroom.”


If you were interested in this bioeconomy story, you may also be interested in the stories below.

Read: Unilever and Bio-on officially unveil new sunscreens made from biodegradable bioplastics.

Read: Bioplastics to ‘play key role’ in implementation of circular economy and EU environmental directives.

ReadIndustry experts query whether bioplastics can solve the plastic pollution problem at sustainability conference.

Read: Biome Bioplastics unveils new tool to help detangle the ‘complexities of plastics’.

Read:Five very different ways that can help tackle the global plastic crisis.

Read:Mixed industry response to European ban on plastic straws, bags and cotton buds.

Visit: SynBio Markets (Berlin, 18-19 November 2019) 

NEW!: And available to download issue #14 of the Bio Market Insights Quarterly

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