As a major global beauty conglomerate, L’Oréal’s power and influence has a responsibility to have a positive impact, and its extensive focus on sustainability is one of many aspects of the company that assures that. With the 50th anniversary of Earth Day having taken place on April 22, L’Oréal Australia, and the world at large, was able to stop and think about the prioritised need for transformational change.

“This year we saw first-hand the importance of protecting our environment, following the devastation caused from the Australian bushfires,” said Rodrigo Pizarro, Managing Director, L’Oréal Australia & New Zealand. “We are currently adjusting to a new life as we navigate through COVID-19, but we cannot become complacent on sustainability. These issues will exist when we return to our normal lives, and the need for environmental action will still be as pressing as before. In a time when I am encouraging my team to think differently to meet the changed demands during COVID-19, I also ensure that as a business we consider sustainability and our environmental footprint in everything we do.”

Earth Day requires each sector to hold themselves accountable in the environmental crisis, with bold and innovative solutions. L’Oréal Australia addresses these concerns across their entire value chain, from product design to distribution, including the production process and the sourcing of raw materials, as well as additional local initiatives. The company factors environmental considerations into their Distribution Centre management, waste management, suppliers they invest in, partner organisations and more.

Specifically, their local initiatives revolved around their use of 100 per cent renewable energy, as achieved with energy provider ENGIE, allowing for full productivity with pure wind power. The company also focuses on zero-waste-to-landfill at its Distribition Centre, with all materials recycled and sorted on-site.

“We partnered with global manufacturing company, Avery Dennison Corporation, and leading waste management company, Wasteflex, to co-design a sustainable label backing,” the company said. “Each year, this diverts 6 tonnes of glassine paper liner from landfills, into recycled paper for use in the recycled paper industry. We are currently working to achieve zero-waste-to-landfill across our remaining sites, including our head office and satellite offices by the end of 2020. With a strong focus on sorting into waste streams, any remaining waste that cannot be recycled or composted is sent to a treatment plant which converts waste-to-energy.”

Additionally, L’Oréal Australia is working on an eco-design for all points of sale, such as in-store or in-salon display units. The units are be optimised for weight, only use Forest Stewardship Council certified materials, are recyclable and don’t contain unnecessary hazardous features such as battery, electronics or magnets.

“We have set Eco-design of all of our temporary point-of-sale as a new standard, and pledged that 100 per cent will meet these sustainability criteria by 2022,” the brand said.

The company also provides employment opportunities that make the world a better place. Since 2011 they have partnered with Waverley Industries and Hoban Recruitment to recruit staff living with a disability to perform co-packing tasks or work in the Distribution Centre. They also more recently partnered with SheWorks, a non-for-profit organisation that provides female talent who are looking to rejoin the workforce after a time of hardship. These programs currently benefit 50 people working in the company. The company also partners with philanthropic groups, such as Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre and Good360 – which redistributes product to hundreds of national charities – to donate millions of dollars worth of extra product to those in need. In 2020 they donated products to those affected by the bushfires, building on their philanthropic spirit.

Congratulations to L’Oréal Australia for continuing to put the planet first.