Ahead of The Consumer Goods Forum’s Sustainable Retail Summit this month, Elvan Onal, P&G Vice President For Home Care products in Europe reinforces the company’s approach to sustainability – the belief that actions speak louder than words – and outlines how this translates into innovation.

There is one common factor all industries are facing today; there is a real sense of urgency and need for action with significant sustainability impact. For multi-national organisations like P&G with a massive worldwide reach, we believe that to build a better business, we need to revisit old ways of thinking and make our innovation capabilities deliver products that work harder and better for consumers; while at the same time, being better for the environment. This will make it easier for everyone to make a small change every day and lead a more sustainable life.

At P&G’s, we believe that businesses of our scale have a responsibility to operate sustainably and create scalable innovations that make a difference in the world and make it easy for people to foster responsible consumption in their everyday life. I firmly believe that by doing so, we can drive revenue growth, customer loyalty and market share. This is the power of putting business and environmental benefit at the core of our strategy.
This is why we have operating principles that enable delivering cleaning products that have both superior performance and reduce environmental impact. Our principles are:

  1. Innovate on our excellence by finding new sustainable solutions efforts that still drive our product superiority. We have conducted significant and careful Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) work to identify the impact our Surface Care and Dish Care products have. Subsequently we are taking a holistic approach, from product design to transit to consumer use, all the way through to end of life to ensure we are responsible stewards of our resources from beginning to end
  2. Delight consumers’ lives: our sustainability initiatives should leave their mark by rewarding and delighting our consumers instead of making consumers choose between an environmentally friendly product and one which has the performance they need and love.
  3. Deliver powerful communication: we need to educate consumers and consumers about sustainability footprint of our products and how best to use them, so they get the performance P&G products are known for and at the same time, minimise the impact to the environment. Our effort on sustainability will be demonstrated by and linked to our core equities.

These principles ensure our business goals are closely linked to our sustainability strategy. By considering environmental improvement and performance improvement rather than environmental improvement Vs. performance improvement, our innovation can make an even bigger difference. Better and stronger collaboration with our retail and business partners is also needed to make meaningful progress. We have already forged strong relationships with organisations such as Terracycle, Wrap and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and only this year, became a founding partner of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste. We cannot build a more sustainable future alone.

So, I invite you to join me to find out more about how our ambitions become tangible commitments at the Sustainable Retail Summit on 24th October. I will be hosting a Special Session at 12.15pm on 25th October where I will share our strategies for our household brands in detail and our sustainability aspirations. I look forward to opening dialogue with many of you there on ways in which we can all collaborate for a more sustainable future.

This post was written and contributed by:

Elvan Onal
Marketing Director, CEEMEA Home Care