Estée Lauder achieves PCR packaging goal ahead of schedule, sets new target
American beauty conglomerate The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. has published its 2021 sustainability report, revealing that it has achieved its aims for the inclusion of post-consumer recycled (PCR) material in its packaging ahead of schedule. As a result of this, the New York-based cosmetics group has set itself a new target of increasing the amount of PCR material in its packaging up to 25% or more by 2025.
The company, which along with its namesake Estée Lauder brand, owns the M.A.C., Bobbi Brown and Smashbox labels, among others, further said that it had set itself a new goal to reduce the amount of virgin petroleum plastic in its packaging to 50% or less by the end of 2030.
The group also revealed that in 2021, 89% of its forest-based fiber cartons were FSC certified, up from 28% in fiscal 2019, progress which supports its existing goal of bringing this figure up to 100% by the end of 2025.
Looking inside the packaging, Estée Lauder integrated a green chemistry program into its product development process in 2021 and added key ingredient glossaries to the websites of seven of its brands. The company intends to have all of its brands publish key ingredient glossaries by the end of 2025.
In addition, the group made progress in its responsible sourcing efforts in fiscal 2021, successfully completing a two-year HERproject program seeking to empower women working in its packaging supply chain. The company also joined the Global Shea Alliance, a non-profit promoting sustainability, quality practices, and standards for shea in food and cosmetics.
On the climate and energy front, Estée Lauder expanded its renewable energy portfolio with a new on-site solar installation in Hillmount, Canada and also saw its largest renewable energy agreement to date – a 22MW virtual power purchase agreement for a wind farm in Oklahoma – become fully operational, a deal that will produce enough renewable energy to cover the company’s entire North American operations.
Elsewhere, Estée Lauder has been pushing forward with the racial equity commitments it announced in June 2020 and has set itself new gender equality commitments. These include achieving gender pay equity by 2023 and increasing the representation of women from underrepresented groups in its operations around the world.
According to the company, 82% of its global workforce is female as of fiscal 2021, while 46% of its U.S. workforce is BIPOC. 55% of the group’s global VP positions and above are held by women.
“As The Estée Lauder Companies marks its 75th anniversary, it is important to recognize that the company’s success has long been rooted not only in its business strategy, but in a deep understanding of its core values,” commented executive chairman William P. Lauder in a release.
“These values, including respect for the individual, uncompromising ethics and integrity, generosity of spirit, and fearless persistence are what will accelerate our commitments into the next 75-years and beyond,” he concluded.
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