The Consumer Goods Forum today announced the release of the Global Protocol on Packaging Sustainability (GPPS) to enable the consumer goods industry to better assess the relative sustainability of packaging.
The GPPS is part of the sustainability work stream at the Consumer Goods Forum, which is sponsored by two of the organisation's board members: Philip Clarke, CEO of Tesco and Paul Polman, CEO of Unilever.
Commenting on today's release, Philip Clarke said: “Tesco is a responsible retailer and understands that packaging is important to its customers. We're working hard with our suppliers to minimise the impact of our packaging on the environment. Having a common language will allow us to have the right conversations with our diverse supply chain. We can then work with suppliers to reduce the environmental impact of packaging whilst making sure it still does the essential job it
needs to do to protect the products we sell.”
Paul Polman added: “One of the strengths of this project is how it has brought together so many companies and organizations from across our industry to work collectively on developing this common language. Now we, as individual companies, need to put the language to work. We are
already doing so in Unilever and we are seeing the benefit.”
The aim of the Protocol is to help companies reduce the environmental impact of their packaging by providing a common language to address a range of business questions about packaging sustainability either within a company or between business partners. That common language consists of a framework and a measurement system. The framework entitled A Global Language for Packaging Sustainability was first published in June 2010. The metrics presented in the Protocol published today deliver the measurement system.
Steering Team Co-Chair Roger Zellner of Kraft Foods said: “Our global collaboration has been a unique achievement, and now many diverse players have a common language and measurement tools for decision making.”
The Protocol was designed collectively by a diverse group of retailers and manufacturers aided by packaging material suppliers and packaging manufacturers and led by a steering team that included representatives from retailers Walmart, Target and Tesco, and manufacturers Kraft Foods, Procter & Gamble, Nestlé and Unilever. It is based on earlier packaging sustainability guidelines developed by the European Organization for Packaging and the Environment (EUROPEN) with ECR Europe and similar work on metrics for packaging developed by GreenBlue’s Sustainable Packaging Coalition (SPC) in the United States.
Use of the Protocol is free of charge from the project website: