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Unilever achieves zero waste to landfill

Staff writer |
Unilever announced it has achieved a key sustainability target of sending zero non-hazardous waste to landfill from its global factory network.

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Believed to be a global first for delivering zero waste on this scale, more than 240 factories in 67 countries making products for brands such as Magnum, Knorr, Dove and Domestos have now eliminated landfill waste.

Unilever has stated its ambition is to double the size of its business while reducing its environmental impact. The company is the Food Products Industry Leader in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index and last week was awarded a Gold Class distinction for its excellent sustainability performance by RobecoSAM in their Sustainability Yearbook 2015.

The zero waste to landfill target forms a key element of Unilever’s sustainable growth ambitions.

Reducing waste at source remains the number one priority, coupled with Unilever and its project partners finding innovative solutions for any remaining waste.

For example, in Cote D’Ivoire, waste has been turned into low cost building materials; in India, organic waste is being composted and shared with the local community to grow vegetables and in China, waste from Hefei, Unilever’s largest factory in Asia, is being used in the manufacture of bricks and paving.

Eliminating waste has resulted in more than €200m of cost avoidance for Unilever and created hundreds of jobs. In Egypt, for example, the local team has launched a programme which empowers disabled employees to earn extra income by recycling waste material from Unilever’s production lines, proving that reducing waste makes sound business sense.

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