Sustainability ... the fifth pillar of Clariant's commitment!
CLARIANT, one of the leading players in specialty chemicals, hosted its inaugural Sustainability Dialog in Frankfurt, Germany. The event allowed the company to share its commitments and invite expert opinions on the importance and role of sustainability in the specialty chemicals industry in the larger interests of society. The event at the Clariant Innovation Center, followed last year's Innovation Dialog, and brought together senior members from Clariant as well as from the Industry to foster dialog with important stakeholders from customer industries, politics, NGOs and the media.
New Sustainability Commitments
The event saw Clariant announce its new company-level commitments and milestones in sustainability mission. These included a commitment to zero- deforestation, an increasing facus on value chain collaboration, and continuous improvement of product portfolio on all sustainability levels. Hosted together with guest sustainability experts at the Clariant Innovation Center in Frankfurt, Germany, Clariant welcomed important stakeholders from customer industries, politics, NGOs and the media to its new event aimed at fostering open dialog and future cooperation.
“Sustainability is not only our license to operate in the future, it is an important element in creating added value for all stakeholders. Only with Specialty Chemistry will we find new ways into a sustainable future,” observed CEO Hariolf Kottmann. “We must create long- term value. And we can only achieve this through innovative strength and strict sustainable practices. It is the only way to establish a leading position in our businesses. We have therefore set up a clear sustainability strategy for the future.”
Clariant's major announcements at the event emphasized its commitment to the on-going process of anchoring sustainability in its strategy. These included:
Commitment to sustainable sourcing of palm oil. Setting up of a zero-deforestation policy with focus on traceability across the value chain and obtaining Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) supply chain certification.
Value chain collaboration: Proactive encouragement of value chain collaboration with customers, suppliers and other third parties to improve Clariant's sustainability and that of its customers.
Replacement of heavy-metal based pigments in s and Chromium (VI) catalysts in the near future. Clariant underlined its commitment to phase out such products from its portfolio identified as non- sustainable.
Portfolio Value Program
Joachim Kr Sustainability and Regulatory Affairs ger, Senior Vice-President Corporate
The latest results of the company's Portfolio Value Program were presented by Joachim Kruger, Senior Vice- President Corporate Sustainability anRegulatory Affairs department. The Portfolio Value Program is a systematic, in-depth screening process using 36 sustainability criteria in all three sustainability dimensions – social, environmental and economic – one on all aspects of a product life-cycle. On the one hand it recognizes products that meet stringent sustainability criteria with a premium 'EcoTain label,' and at the same time identifies others for improvement and/or replacement through focused R&D programmes, and where not feasible, eventual phase-out. The sustainability roadmap requires each of the Business Units to identify which of their products have to be improved to be more sustainable and which criteria or topics have to be addressed respectively. The benefits of the program include reduced risks in product portfolio, increased international competiveness and benefits for customers through innovative solutions across the value chain.
Martin Vollmer, Chief Technology Officer & Head of Group Technology & Innovation
The ongoing screening process being implemented across the company identifies product groups for improvement through innovation, replacement or removal from the portfolio. All future innovations from Clariant will be screened against the criteria from the outset. To date, Clariant has screened 84% of turnover of its portfolio against the criteria in order to steer future portfolio improvements. From this, 76% of the product portfolio already fulfils Clariant's sustainability definition. More than 60 products origination from all business areas have already been awarded Clariant's EcoTain label. EcoTain is assigned to those products which significantly exceed market sustainability standards, have best-in-class performance and contribute overall to the sustainability efforts of the company and of customers.
Example in Case: GlucoTain receives EcoTain Sustainability Excellence Label
Business Unit Head ICS, Christian Vang
To demonstrate EcoTain criteria in action, Christian Vang, Head of BU Industrial & Consumer Specialties (ICS), focused on the Personal Care sector and new EcoTain recipient GlucoTain, its range of sugar-based co-surfactants for applications such as shampoos, shower gels and shaving foams. So far, 22 ICS products for Personal and Home Care have been awarded the EcoTain. In the pipeline are 40 more nominations for crop solutions, industrial lubricants and personal care, with the screening process on-going until end of 2015.
The GlucoTain surfactant range allows formulating of more ecological products: they are based on 95% natural, renewable resources of vegetable origin. The EO free and sulphate-free ingredients are readily biodegradable with 94-95% RCI (Renewable Carbon Index) and a good eco-tox profile, enabling EU Eco-Label and Nordic Swan certification. In addition, GlucoTain helps to reduce formulation complexity by enabling the use of fewer components such as thickeners and conditioning agents. The EcoTain screening process has shown GlucoTain surfactants to be best- in-class in improving directly material efficiency in the use phase. Better viscosity control and solubilizing properties are among further performance features also simplifying formulation development.
Professor Dr. Klaus Töpfer, Executive Director
Mr. Vang further observed, “Following the EcoTain assessment of glucamide products for homecare earlier this year, the BU Industrial & Consumer Specialities has now been able to assess the full range of GlucoTain surfactants for personal care formulations. We are committed to the pursuit of sustainability and EcoTain empowers our customers to differentiate at the market and contributes to achieving their sustainability targets. “The awarding of EcoTain status to the GlucoTain range means that all of Clariant's glucamides for the home care, crop solutions and personal care markets now carry the EcoTain label. Clariant's continuing assessment of its Personal Care portfolio is expected to be finalized by the end of 2015, giving customers in this market access to a complete line of sustainable EcoTain products.
More than 150 participants attended the keynote presentations of CEO Hariolf Kottmann, Head of Business Unit Industrial & Consumer Specialties Christian Vang, and guest speaker Klaus Topfer, Executive Director of the Institute for Advanced Sustainability Studies, elaborated on sustainable development trends in the specialty chemicals industry and set a framework to larger society context. Further highlights throughout the day included a special sustainability focus on India and China, insights on value chain and supply chain collaboration, and the results of Clariant screening of the sustainability performance of its product portfolio.
Clariant is listed among the world's top ten percent of chemical companies in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI), one of the most renowned global sustainability indices.