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Procter & Gamble Making Headway on Sustainability

The company reports achieving traction in its no deforestation drive in its palm oil supply chain and reduces water use.

The Procter & Gamble Co. said it is making strides against its long-term sustainability goals.

In its 17th annual sustainability report, released Dec. 15, P&G reaffirmed that it aims “to power all its plants with 100 percent renewable energy, to use 100 percent renewable or recycled material for all products and packaging, and to have zero consumer and manufacturing waste go to landfills.”

The report includes P&G’s recent efforts to address climate change, including a recently stated goal to reduce absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2020 and two new partnerships with Constellation Energy and EDF Renewable Energy, which will increase the company’s use of renewable energy. The report also details the company’s commitment to responsible sourcing of wood fiber and palm oil.

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The use of palm oil — and the deforestation often associated with the ingredient — is a hot button issue in the food and beauty industry.

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P&G stated, “We are unequivocally committed to achieving zero deforestation in our palm supply chain.” It said, “We have been driving progress via a three-pillar approach. First, we are working with suppliers to ensure they meet our traceability and no-deforestation requirements. Second, our small-farmers program is working to improve practices and livelihoods for smallholders in the palm kernel oil supply chain. Finally, we are working with the industry and nongovernmental organizations to set standards and methodologies. We continue to connect and collaborate with multiple stakeholders to drive harmonized industry standards and approaches to advance P&G and industry-wide palm oil efforts.”

P&G’s report also highlighted other improvements, including, but not limited to water reduction, where it exceeded water reduction goal for manufacturing by delivering a 21 percent reduction since 2010, and limiting manufacturing waste. Over the past three years, P&G said it has increased the number of zero manufacturing waste to landfill sites from 10 percent to nearly 50 percent of its manufacturing sites globally.

“Sustainability is a responsibility and a business opportunity. Since 2007, we have realized a cost savings of nearly $2 billion through waste and energy savings and have reduced our environmental impact,” said Len Sauers, P&G’s vice president of sustainability. “It is exciting to see the changes we are making in our operations, the benefits created for the business and the progress we are making against our sustainability goals.”