L’Occitane Partners with Loop for 100% Sustainable Plastics Pledge

Eco-refills from L’Occitane

Beauty company L’Occitane Group recently signed a multi-year agreement with the innovative Loop Industries to support its goal of 100% sustainable product packaging.

Loop Industries Inc. has patented an upcycling technology to break down the polyester plastic and fibers in bottles, packaging, textile waste, and even ocean plastics, and repurpose them in a virgin-quality polyester plastic packaging. L’Occitane will begin incorporating the PET plastic in packaging for its en Provence brand starting in 2022.

L’Occitane en Provence is “very conscious of the importance of eco-design and sustainable packaging,” stated Global Brand Director Adrien Geiger. He described the partnership with Loop as “a game-changer that can help us fundamentally contribute to solving the growing global concern about plastic pollution.”

The global manufacturer, whose portfolio includes L'Occitane en Provence, Melvita, and Erborian, currently uses 30% recycled plastic but aims to have 100% of its bottles made of sustainable plastics by 2025. In 2008, the company first introduced eco-refills to limit the environmental impact of its product distribution. In 2014, the group began providing in-store recycling facilities for empty cosmetics containers. The L’Occitane Group is also working with suppliers to design lighter packaging and lower emissions from product transport.

Plastics with the Loop logo meet FDA requirements for use in food-grade packaging.

“We are convinced that companies that make this transition, use sustainable packaging and encourage recycling, will help restore our environment and create greater economic value,” Loop’s founder Daniel Solomita stated.

Other Cosmetic Sustainability Efforts

L’Occitane isn’t alone in actively pursuing sustainability as part of its corporate social responsibility initiatives. Other beauty industry players are also trying to demonstrate awareness of their environmental impact:

  • Earlier this year Lush rolled out a vegan, packaging- and plastic-free ‘Naked' skincare line in Europe.
  • REN Clean Skincare pledged to become completely "zero waste" by 2021. The company in 2018 received the Sustainable Packing Award for using ocean plastic.
  • Personal care giant Procter & Gamble kicked off the year by co-founding the ‘Alliance to End Plastic Waste' (AEPW) to tackle plastic waste levels in the ocean.

Personal care retailer By Humankind also in February 2019 announced $4 million in seed funding to support its launch of deodorant, shampoo, and mouthwash products that eliminate single-use plastic by 90%. For instance, its deodorant comes in a refillable plastic roller with paper-pod refills.

Sephora and Space NK have both devoted more shelf space to products that do not use contentious chemicals. The Clean at Sephora category launched June 2018 with skin care, hair care, cosmetics, and fragrance brands free of the chemicals eco-conscious customers are trying to avoid.

Sustainability is also the focus of industry conferences. The tenth annual Sustainable Cosmetics Summit is in May in New York. According to the conference organizer Organic Monitor, “packaging pollution has become a major environmental issue for cosmetic and consumer goods industries, with about 300 millions of tonnes of plastic waste generated each year.”

Image Credit: L’Occitane

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