Interview with Angelina Gossen, Technical Marketing Lead Home Care at Croda
Your motto is: “Sustainability is at the heart of our business”. How do you “live” this motto?
At Croda, sustainability has a long tradition. When our business was founded in 1925, we understood the central role science plays in our everyday lives. Not only science guided our way, but also the heritage we are building on, with sustainability always central to our thinking. Originally, that meant refining wool grease from prosperous Yorkshire wool trade into lanolin. So, our very first product, lanolin was already a natural derived product. Today, that means using our Smart science to improve livesTM.
But the understanding of sustainability is so much wider for us. We believe sustainability means doing business the right way: environmentally, socially, and financially. All of our employees around the world contribute to sustainability on a daily basis and we are fully committed: using renewable raw materials and environmentally sensitive and safe processes; producing innovative, high quality products with sustainable benefits in use; and supporting our people and communities in which we operate.
Through our Commitment to science-based targets and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we will create, make, and sell solutions to tackle some of the biggest challenges the world is facing. We will be Climate, Land, and People Positive by 2030.
Furthermore, we are leading our sector in becoming only the third mayor company in the world to have a 1.5°C science-based target validated. Therefore, together with local sustainability teams, we have developed decarbonisation roadmaps across our manufacturing sites. The combined efforts of the sites, our R&D teams innovating to develop low carbon alternative solutions, and supply chain engagement, we will support our customers on their decarbonisation journeys. The benefits of our ingredients will also help consumers reduce their own carbon footprints.
What are your future goals in connection with sustainability?
We will be the most sustainable supplier of innovative ingredients. Our action plan for the decade is to be Climate, Land, and People Positive by 2030. In detail that means:
By 2030, over 75% of our organic raw materials by weight will be bio-based, absorbing carbon from the atmosphere as they grow. The use of our products will avoid four times the carbon emissions associated with our business, our 4:1 carbon cover. By 2050, we will be a net zero organisation
By 2030, the land area saved through the improved yields as a result of our ingredients and technologies will exceed that used to grow our raw materials. We will have established three new partnerships to contribute to the recovery of compromised farmland.
By 2030, we will contribute to the development of 25% of WHO-listed pipeline vaccines and protect at least 60 million people per year from harmful UV rays. We will establish and fund a Croda Foundation to help permanently improve over one million lives in relevant communities, supported by our technologies. We will achieve gender balance across the leadership roles in our organisation.
Do current world problems – corona, logistics, war - influence your sustainability concept?
To say not would be a lie. We do face the same challenges the industry is facing regarding raw material sourcing, corona, and logistics. Still, we believe that the actions we take regarding sustainability are the correct ones and should not be stopped or paused regardless of the surrounding situation or the influencing factors.
So, which actions are you taking in the Home Care business?
We are actively contributing to our sustainability goals. One of our 2030 targets is to complete a full life cycle assessment for the Top 100 products at Croda. In the Home Care business, we have been the first ones to make a full life cycle assessment at Croda for Coltide RadianceTM. It is an innovative biopolymer that is substantive to fibres, delivers total fabric protection giving longer lasting benefits to garments. Limiting the damage from the washing and drying process, our protein-based technology delivers colour and print protection, reduced greying of whites, fibre protection to keep garments looking newer for longer. It is 80% biobased and delivers not only superior performance and sensory effects but has impressive sustainability benefits as well. Using Coltide Radiance to enhance your fabric conditioner formulation helps to extend the lifetime of garments. With 130,000 litres of water and 450kg of CO2e avoided per 1kg Coltide Radiance, it has an outstanding sustainability profile.
Another example is the new manufacturing site of Atlas Point in the US where we support Croda’s 1.5°C science-based target. Here we produce our ECO Range, which is a product portfolio of 100% bio-based surfactants with ethylene-oxide produced from biomass instead of crude oil. The facility is using solar panels and combined heat and power units that are powered by local landfill gas. Therefore, it runs on 100% renewable electricity. With those amendments, we can lower the carbon footprints (cradle-to-cradle) of the different materials and deliver 100% bio-based products without sacrifice in performance as they are chemically identical.
How do you see the future development in the Home Care industry?
Besides the sustainability topic being one of the most important goals for us we are looking into innovative and sustainable solutions in the Home Care industry specifically. Here, our novel Biotechnology platform comes across. Unlike the other platforms, e.g. fabric care, surface care, air care, etc., this platform has the purpose to serve all of them and to play a more extensive and comprehensive role. There is a real focus on new technologies and ideas that are apply cross-platform. Our first products in this platform have been launched in 2021.
The consumers are becoming increasingly concerned over the negative impact that the chemical cleaners they use can have on the health and safety of themselves, their families and on the environment. We are now able to offer probiotic cleaning ingredients. With a specifically chosen bacillus strain blend we have brought two products to the market. One offers deep down hard surface cleaning and the other one is an odour neutraliser. Both provide you with safe and sustainable solutions to cleaning by letting nature do the work.
But this is only where the work starts. Our next-generation probiotic cleaning ingredient, CrobioticTM 100, launched at the Sepawa Congress 2022, is an optimised blend of beneficial bacteria strains in a spore form that offers a proven, innovative, and effective long-term approach to odour control and hard surface cleaning. It will allow formulators and brand owners to use it in a wide range of their products. This next-generation ingredient offers a more sustainable solution to cleaning, both in transportation and product application. This one single product covers a range of application areas, removing the requirement for different products for specific applications, allowing for a more convenient approach to cleaning. This nature facing product is certified by ECOCERT (for specific formulations) and is also 100% bio-based, helping customers to achieve their sustainability goals.
So, you can see we are by far not at the end of our sustainability journey. We learn and challenge ourselves all the time and this is how we achieve to be the most sustainable supplier in the speciality chemicals industry by 2030.