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Product Sustainability

Ecolab is on a continuous journey to be a leader in product safety and sustainability. Our policies and programs have been developed to protect what is vital – People Health, Planet Health and Business Health.

When it comes to our products, we consider the total impact on both human health and the environment. Our Impacts That Matter criteria and packaging principles help ensure that Ecolab products are designed with sustainability in mind without compromising safety or performance.

Ecolab is a leader in the industry in developing new, effective solutions that help our customers drive operational efficiency, product quality, safety and compliance while minimizing environmental impact throughout a product’s lifecycle.

Sustainable Design Principles

Ecolab designs products for maximum positive impact. Our primary objective is to help customers achieve significant sustainability, safety and productivity gains in their own operations, while minimizing the footprint of the products we deliver. Everyone at Ecolab shares this responsibility, and the foundations of sustainable design are embedded into our Research and Development processes.

Chemicals Management 

Ecolab’s product sustainability programs are built in partnership with our regulatory teams to go beyond regulation to help ensure best practices in chemical footprint management. Ecolab participates in the Chemical Footprint project as part of our annual review of practices in this area.

In 2021, we refreshed our internal sustainability policies to reflect the latest in product stewardship best practices and scientific evidence on chemicals of high concern.

Our Substances of High Concern Position (English)

Packaging Goals

Ecolab is committed to ensuring that our products and packaging advance safety and sustainability. We continuously improve our designs to help minimize waste and safely deliver best-in-class experiences for our customers. Our commitment to excellence in packaging is supported by a global team of more than 50 packaging professionals, including engineers, materials scientists, analysts and technicians.

By 2030, our ambition is to have moved to reusable or recyclable-by-design packaging for non-regulated products. Currently, 91% of Ecolab’s packaging by weight is reusable or recyclable-by-design.

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Reducing Plastic Waste

  • We have a long history of pioneering packaging technology. For example, our SmartPower™ technology reduces plastic use by up to 99%, as compared to traditional packaging, by replacing five-gallon plastic pails with shrink-wrapped blocks.
  • In addition, we were an early adopter of reusable containers for our concentrate products, as well as in the incorporation of post-consumer recycled plastic resin (PCR) into many of our packages. For more than 17 years, our SolidPower™ XL capsule has contained 40% post-consumer resin.
  • In 2023, we utilized over 6 million pounds of post-consumer plastic resin.
  • Aligned with circular economy principles, Ecolab continues to deliver virgin plastic resin avoidance. In 2023, we avoided 14.5 million pounds of virgin plastic resin. This impact represents 17% of Ecolab’s total plastic packaging by weight.
  • We have accomplished this through:
    • Reduction: Packaging with reduced plastic content and concentrated product alternatives with lower plastic packaging.
    • Reuse: Packaging reuse and purchase of reconditioned plastic containers and IBCs/totes.
    • Recycling: Incorporation of post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials into packaging.
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Our regulatory teams, processes, policies and practices are the foundation for keeping our customers and business ahead of ever-changing regulations.

Ethical Sourcing

Our suppliers are held to global fundamental principles of human dignity.
Our Ethical Sourcing Standards are the foundation of our global supply chain initiative, requiring our direct suppliers to protect the health, safety and human rights of their associates.

Palm Oil Sourcing

Ecolab does not directly purchase palm oil or palm oil derivatives. However, any supplier partners providing palm derived material are members of Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), to ensure sustainable and responsible sourcing.

Conflict Minerals

Ecolab supports human rights organizations to end violence and atrocities in Central Africa, specifically the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and nine adjoining countries.