Plastic is destroying the environment as we know it. From the land to the sea, it is recorded that in the last decade, humans have produced more plastic than in the previous century. A shocking figure which is only furthered by the fact that up to 12.7 million tons of plastic enter our oceans year on year. This is due to only 9% of plastic being recycled. That leaves a shocking 91%, where 12% is burned and 79% ending up in landfills or clogging up various ecosystems. So why, when we know about these catastrophic effects our consumerism is having on the earth, do more companies and brands not do more to stop this?
L’Occitane is not one of them. Leading the way in sustainable practices within the beauty industry it has announced its goals for 2025. First up, it plans on ensuring 100% of its bottles are made from recycled plastic, and that 100% of its stores offer a Terra Cycle recycling service. Helping them reach this goal? By 2020 they are aiming to save at least 170 tons of plastic each year and reduce their consumption by 10%. At L’Occitane they make good of their promises, with the brand from 2008 to 2019 having already reportedly cut down its plastic consumption by an incredible 22%, due to them working with recycled plastic and the eco-refills.
First introduced in 2008 its eco-refills were ahead of their time. Even then, the brand understood the effects of plastic pollution as having on the earth and wanted to stop it. Aiming to create a circular economy, this would mean most materials had a second life whilst encouraging people to recycle. With 30% of their stores currently providing recycling services, they are already on the road to success. Now, fifteen of its products are available in eco-refills meaning they use up to 90% less material than the original containers they were housed in. With other projects in the works, including evaluating different projects dedicated to resolving the global plastic pollution issue our only hope is that more brands take note.