OUR PRODUCTS & TECHNOLOGIES

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Products and technologies are at the heart of everything we do. We create more value for our customers and consumers by constantly innovating to offer better performance with a reduced ecological footprint. To stand at the side of our stakeholders as a reliable partner, we aim to transform our company and our product portfolio sustainably and strive to ensure that each new product contributes to sustainability. Our goal is to offer increasingly better solutions, products and services that also have a positive impact on the environment and society.

Sustainability in our Business Units

Our business units in the consumer goods and industrial customer segments align their brands and technologies with the specific sustainability challenges that are most relevant for their product portfolio, with a goal to further integrate sustainability into brand and business strategies.

Implementing our Sustainability Strategy

With our pioneering spirit, our knowledge, and our products and technologies, we want to enrich and improve the lives of billions every day and shape a viable future for the next generations. In the following, you will find selected contributions of our products and technologies to our 2030+ Sustainability Ambition Framework

REGENERA­TIVE PLANET

Climate

We want our products and technologies to help avoid CO2 emissions from being generated and contribute to improving the efficient use of energy with innovations.

Our Adhesive Technologies business unit continuously optimizes its technologies and solutions to promote resource conservation in our customers’ applications. Our low-temperature adhesives in the Technomelt Supra COOL range, for instance, require a lower processing temperature, meaning that in addition to higher process efficiency, customers can also achieve energy savings of up to 40 percent. 

The Better Natured line from Zotos Professional includes products with formulas that range from 86% to 99% naturally derived, utilizing the Global ISO Standard 16128 that defines naturally-derived as a plant or mineral-derived material or water which has undergone limited processing. The brand is also partnering with international recycling leader TerraCycle™ on the Better Natured Recycling Program. This free recycling initiative ensures that packaging for the Better Natured line of hair care products is diverted from the landfill and nationally recyclable.

Circularity

To continue promoting the circular economy in our business operations, we are focusing on reducing production waste and increasing recycling at our sites, as well as on innovative, intelligent, and sustainable packaging concepts. In addition to new product forms and the use of recyclable and recycled plastics in our packaging, we also use refillable packaging.

We are testing a variety of approaches to meet the demand from consumers and distributors for reusable packaging and refills. These refill solutions are designed either as a home solution or for purchasing products from a refill station to fill existing packaging. Under our premium brand Authentic Beauty Concept, we are testing refill solutions for the hair salon business. With the help of the "Refill Bar”, hair salon visitors can refill their favorite products repeatedly in a bottle made of recycled material. We also offer refill solutions with refill bags and concentrates for select brands in North America.

We also promote a circular economy by developing innovative adhesive solutions that enable recycling, repair and reuse of products and their components.

Natural Ressources

Henkel is committed to responsible management of raw materials, and especially the conservation of natural resources and biodiversity. We use ingredients based on renewable raw materials to optimize the overall characteristics of our products, wherever this is compatible with environmental, economic and social considerations.

Thus, many of our consumer and industrial adhesives are based on nature-based raw materials, such as plant-based oils and their derivatives, as well as tree resin and carbohydrates like starch, sugar and cellulose. Our Pritt glue stick, for example, is formulated with 97 percent natural ingredients (including water). We also pioneer new solutions for adhesives, sealants and coatings that replace fossil raw materials with materials made from biomass. For example, we have developed a high-performance hotmelt adhesive made of over 80 percent bio-based materials and with a significantly reduced carbon footprint. We work with our suppliers to ensure sustainable sourcing of natural resources.

THRIVING COMMUNITIES

Equity

To increase access to business opportunities for underrepresented communities, Henkel’s Supplier Diversity Program helps to link high-performing diverse suppliers to Henkel strategy. This ensures that Henkel will continue to build inclusive and dynamic supply base while supporting the growth of minority suppliers. In 2022 Henkel purchased $93M with women and minority-owned businesses through this program, and continues to mentor Minority Business Enterprises through coaching and information sessions.

Education

For the past 40 years, Henkel North America has been proud to provide students who have excelled in their studies and proven to be leaders in their communities with support to pursue their educational goals. Recognizing the need for systemic change to address barriers that make it difficult for low-income students of color to pursue higher education, Henkel North America has launched an over $1 million initiative to provide dozens of students with financial support and internship opportunities. In partnership with UNCF (United Negro College Fund), the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, Pathways to Education Canada and the American Indian Science and Engineering Society, this initiative is designed so that students from underrepresented communities have an equal chance to succeed.

In support of our educational pursuits, Henkel Researchers’ World was launched globally 12 years ago to introduce elementary school children to the world of science through hands-on interactive experiments and place them in the role of an actual researcher to inspire curiosity in science, reaching more than 90,000 children to date. In 2021, Henkel opened North America’s first dedicated Henkel Researchers’ World classroom in Stamford, CT, bringing the program to nearly 3,000 U.S. children to date.

WELLBEING

We promote the health and vitality of our employees, customers, and consumers to help create an agile, high-performance organization and community. To do so, we rely on globally uniform health and safety standards, and provide health and preventive care programs to guard against workplace risks that could lead to illness. The broad range of services offered at our sites has two aims: promoting our employees’ physical health and maintaining their mental vitality.

The Journey to Myself 2022 health campaign featured activities aimed at improving the mental resilience of employees through a series of initiatives. A holistic approach combined the mental, physical and social components of health. More than 2,650 employees worldwide have been trained as MentalScouts who act as ambassadors for this topic within the company.

TRUSTED PARTNER

Performance

Excellent quality and performance are the central value propositions for our brands and technologies, and create the foundation for our business success. Products that combine high performance with a reduced environmental footprint are key factors for successful future-oriented business development.

In partnership with Novozymes, one of Henkel’s enzyme suppliers in North America, Henkel has developed new variants for the enzymes used in our leading laundry and home care products. These developments increase product concentration by up to 40 percent, reducing the amount of natural resources used in production and along the value chain while maintaining the high quality performance that consumers enjoy from our top brands.


Transparency

Henkel and 35 other cosmetics and personal care companies joined forces to form the Eco Beauty Score Consortium in September 2021. The goal of the consortium is to develop an industry-wide system for assessing the environmental impact of cosmetic products to make it easier for consumers to make sustainable shopping decisions. This approach, which is based on the latest research, is designed to take into account the entire product life cycle. 

To date, Henkel has reviewed the environmental footprint of more than 200,000 product formulas and created a summary of vital information for each one, such as their carbon footprint and biodegradability. We use that information to understand how each of our formulas contributes to our overall sustainability efforts and evaluate what necessary changes or adjustments are needed.

To advance transparency along the value chain, Henkel has partnered with the development organization Solidaridad. Since 2013, Henkel has been involved in South America with a goal, among others, of establishing a fully traceable palm oil supply chain for the production of our Dial soap brand in North America. The partnership’s focus is on training smallholder farmers in best practice approaches, including climate-friendly agriculture, along with exerting an influence on policy and involving stakeholders. By the end of 2022, around 38,500 smallholders have been reached on some 347,000 hectares under cultivation.

Collaboration 

In collaboration with our partners, we aim to maximize the impact of our sustainability activities by driving sustainability in our value chains and beyond.

In 2023, Henkel and Shell Chemical LP agreed to a five-year collaboration to replace up to 200,000 tonnes of fossil feedstocks used in the manufacturing of surfactants with feedstocks that are based on renewable raw materials. The renewable-based surfactants, ingredients in cleaning products that help lather and lift dirt, are used in Henkel’s laundry product brands, including many varieties of Persil®, Purex® and all® brands. This initiative has the potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 120,000 tonnes of COe over the length of the five-year agreement. Shell’s partnership advances Henkel’s share of renewable-based ingredients and is a concrete step toward realizing our vision of a better planet through a climate-friendly business model.