Household and personal care products a $62 bn opportunity

Nature-positive solutions need to be more widely adopted
Household and personal care products a $62 bn opportunity
Household shopping

The household products and personal care sector could generate up to $62 billion in annual business value by 2030 if it puts nature at the heart of operations. This is according to a new World Economic Forum (WEF) research.

This business value is part of the $10 trillion in business opportunity that could be unlocked if nature-positive solutions are more widely adopted by private sector enterprises.

The sector generates about $700 billion in annual revenue, according to the WEF, but often at the expense of our ecology.

The cosmetics industry, which produces 120 billion packaging units a year and palm oil, alone accounted for 7 percent of global deforestation from 2000 to 2018, it said.

WEF’s new research, titled Nature Positive: Role of the Household and Personal Care, says it is essential for household and personal care products ensure operations are within the safe and just Earth system boundaries and contribute to a net-zero future.

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Plastic production alone from the sector generates 3.4 percent of Greenhouse Gases (GHGs) emissions globally, which are larger than aviation’s carbon footprint.

Reusing only 10-20 percent of plastic products could prevent the equivalent of nearly 50 percent of marine plastic pollution every year.

Action on nature

Action on nature, progress remains slow. Recent research shows that although 83 percent of Fortune Global 500 companies have climate change targets, just 25 percent have established freshwater consumption targets.  Only 5 percent set targets related to biodiversity and assessed their impacts on nature.
There are, however, strong commercial arguments for companies to engage in biodiversity.

Ulrike Sapiro, Chief Sustainability Officer of Henkel, a leading chemical and consumer goods company, said: “Our customers and investors expect us to adopt sustainable practices and develop products that do no harm. They also want us to be transparent and accountable for any nature and biodiversity-related impacts throughout our supply chains. Each of our organizations must play our part in shaping an industry that not only fulfills our everyday needs but also secures a flourishing planet for generations to come.”

Nature-based solutions can contribute up to 37% of the emission reductions required by 2030 to keep the global temperature increase below 2C.

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