Unlocking Sustainability Improvements in Personal Care and Household Product Lifecycles through Green Chemistry and Engineering
Designing for sustainability improvements in personal care and household formulas and packaging lifecycles requires extensive data and a conscious focus from the earliest phases of product creation. Green chemistry and engineering provide frameworks to achieve this while retaining required performance attributes. These frameworks can be leveraged through many potential strategies, among which the use of quantitative metrics to understand material impacts and guide design choices has proven to be of great value. The industry has made significant progress in improving its impact, but many obstacles remain, and innovation will be crucial to surpass them. Increased industry transparency, data sharing, and collaboration will further accelerate progress toward closing the loop and reducing life cycle impacts.
Commonly desired product attributes such as naturally derived ingredients or lack of plastic packaging do not necessarily result in formulas or packages that lead to sustainability improvements across their lifecycles. The development of products that result in sustainability improvements by minimizing life cycle impacts requires understanding and focused consideration of the nuances of ingredient and packaging material properties, performance, and economics, along with value chain engagement.
This symposium will provide a forum to share case studies and success stories of leveraging green chemistry and engineering approaches to design personal care and household products (raw materials, formulas, and packaging) that achieve sustainability improvements through minimized life cycle impacts; with a goal of helping to enable a more sustainable, closed-loop economy. It will also create a dialog around remaining unmet industry needs.
Some of the ideas to be discussed include:
- The use of metrics to quantify green chemistry performance and material impacts and facilitate improvements in formula and packaging development and innovation.
- Examples of success stories in design for X strategies, development of products that avoid adverse environmental impacts and/or reduce use phase impacts, and the general leveraging of the principles of green chemistry and engineering to develop raw materials, products, and processes with improved sustainability profiles.
- Strategies for enabling the economic competitiveness of such improved processes and technologies in the consumer goods industry.
- The use of data analytics and Artificial Intelligence approaches to improve sustainability in product design and systemic impact minimization.
- Remaining obstacles to achieving more sustainability improvements in designing consumer products.
Paul Scott, The Estée Lauder Companies
Eva Thompson, The Estée Lauder Companies