2018 – Our greenest year yet!

2018 – Our greenest year yet!

It’s safe to say that 2018 has been a busy year here at Bio-D.

This year has seen the team triumph in Veganuary, support World Earth Day and partner with top food writers to shout about the environment and the impact our everyday tasks can have on the planet – all in a bid to help consumers contribute to a healthier, more sustainable planet.

We also joined The Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Global Commitment, a pledge signed by over 200 global businesses to eliminate single-use plastics from their operations and invest in new technology so 100% of their packaging can be recycled by 2025.

But the biggest achievement we’ve accomplished this year is ensuring that a whopping 74% of our range is now packaged in bottles made from 100% recycled post-consumer waste – just a quarter off our target for 2018!

We launched the first of our new packaging in January, in a bid to reduce the amount of waste taken to landfill sites, as well as reduce overall energy consumption in the UK.

The packaging was introduced across the majority of our range, beginning with the Laundry Liquid and Washing-up Liquid, and growing to include the Home and Garden sanitiser right through to our most recent addition – Toilet Cleaner. This meant that we could continue to produce our naturally derived, plant-based range while having an even smaller impact on the environment.

However, the year hasn’t been without its challenges, as we continue to work to introduce the packaging across the whole of our range. Tests and tribulations we have faced during 2018 include:

    • Sourcing new materials. Finding the right type of plastic that can be fully recycled to produce our packaging can be difficult, as they’re not widely available in the UK and can be expensive to produce. The plastic can cause more faults during the manufacturing process so it was important to source something that doesn’t impact the bottle quality.
    • The type of plastic used. Recyclable High-Density Polyethylene, or rHDPE (the plastic used in our 100% recycled packaging), is often less flexible than traditional plastics, which means lots of testing is needed in order to determine the correct thickness needed for each bottle. We’ve spent a lot of 2018 experimenting to find the best packaging for our products.
    • Reactivity to product. Sometimes the cleaning products themselves can react with certain plastics, so it was essential to find a material that was compatible with each item in the Bio-D range. This meant lengthy compatibility tests to find the perfect match.
    • The colour of the packaging. Believe it or not, the colour of packaging can really change the way a product looks. We love the look of our current platinum-look bottles, but ensuring we continue to use rHDPE that brings out the best of our products was a real priority.

Lorraine Dunn, Purchasing Manager here at Bio-D, said: “It was a challenging task sourcing bottles that could be made in the recycled material, but we managed to work in partnership with our suppliers in order to come up with a solution and achieve our goal!”

Nick Moulson, our Production Manager said: “We had to do lots of testing to make sure the new bottles would be the same quality as the existing ones to prevent any damages during transit – it took a fair while, but it was worth it to see the new bottles on the lines.”

Emily Gallagher Bio-D’s Sales Manager, said: “Initially we were worried about what customers would think of the new bottle colour – through social media and the new on-pack logo we managed to educate customers on the reason behind the change and we get great feedback on our mission to have the whole range recycled and recyclable!”

By the end of 2019 we hope to have all of our bottled range available in recycled materials, in a bid reduce the amount of single-use plastic in the market and encourage our customers to recycle and re-use even more – six years ahead of The New Plastics Economy Global Commitment target, which aims to eliminate single-use plastic completely.

Greener and more environmentally-friendly than ever before, we’ve had a brilliant 2018, and look forward to seeing what the new year brings – we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!