SealedAir recycles products— without using electricity
By Allie Williams
The “Bubble Wrap” people have a new mission and vision, as well as a new tagline and attitude: “Re-imagine SealedAir.” Ron Cotterman, SealedAir’s vice president of sustainability, describes how to improve packaging and reduce waste in the supply chain:
“People look at the supply chain using ‘systems thinking.’ Often, one identifies a problem and solves that problem without thinking holistically about downstream and upstream issues: Can I have a bigger impact if I look at the picture in a bigger way?”
SealedAir’s looking to influence those in their supply chains by getting members together to brainstorm improvements in a broad sense—both to gain victories on specific projects, but also to drive business forward.
“Think beyond just solving problems to changing and evolving supply chains,” Cotterman says.
Soap for hope
One example: SealedAir’s commercial-cleaning business, Diversey, Inc. Diversey works in food safety and security, sustainable cleaning, sanitation and facility hygiene.
“Our branded products are helping create a focus point to create a sense of social well-being through things like the ‘Soap for hope’ program,” says Cotterman. “We understand the value of sanitation and hygiene. A key segment we serve is the hospitality industry. Through a series of conversations with one of our hotel partners, relative to soap waste, we connected with our local communities, made a business model outlining their needs and now provide a solution.
“Our hotel clients provide used soap that they reprocess into new bars. This creates local jobs and the new bars are given to the needy in the community. People are making this happen, not machines. We are doing this without using electricity. Unlike others, this is not a central processing facility, so we can address any waste problems, address a hygiene issue and doing this produces a livelihood for individuals as a source of income.
“It’s a scalable business model. This program was formally launched last year and expanding now in Bali, Cambodia, Manila, Dubai, [and] Bangkok. We are excited as we drive results and look forward to sharing the success of the program….”
Cotterman concluded: “We often use the term ‘shared value.’ At the end of the day, all of our programs have to have shared value, because it’s not just about SealedAir. It’s about what we make happen in the marketplace, and how we bring and scale it in the broader sense. I get a chance to drive all these programs that are so much bigger than the people can initially imagine. That’s the spirit of our new tag line—‘Re-Imagine SealedAir’— and we’re making it happen through sustainability.”