L’Oréal has set very ambitious targets leading to a sustainable transformation of its entire business and value chain. One of these targets is a “Zero Deforestation Policy”, published in 2014.
As part of its policy, the Group pledged that by the end of 2020 at the latest, none of the ingredients and raw materials used in its products would be linked in any way to deforestation. Since 2007, L’Oréal has implemented sustainable sourcing action plans for raw materials that could imply deforestation, such as palm oil, soya oil and wood-fiber based products. The respect of human rights -namely, no child labor, no forced or bonded labor of any type, safe working and living conditions as well as the fight against potential sources of discrimination are taken into account in these sourcing programs.
Palm oil, palm oil and palm kernel oil derivatives
L’Oréal purchases less than 310 tonnes of palm oil annually. However, it consumes the equivalent of 75,000 tonnes of palm oil derivatives (from the pulp of the palm’s fruit) and palm kernel oil (the extract of the kernel).
100% of the palm oil sourced by L’Oréal has complied with Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) standards since 2010, following the rigorous Segregated (SG) model, one of the most demanding. Regarding palm oil derivatives, which are also 100% certified since 2012. L’Oréal had increased the proportion of its physically certified purchases to 95% of RSPO Mass Balance at the end of 2020, compared with 70% in 2019 and 54% in 2018.The remainder is covered by the RSPO Book and Claim model. Furthermore, in 2014, the Group began tracing derivatives all the way back to their source. To date, its research has made it possible to trace 98% of its derivative volumes back to refineries, 92% back to mills and 27% back to plantations. To complete its certification objectives, L’Oréal made a commitment for at least 30% of its volumes to be connected to field projects that support small, independent planters. In 2020, approximately 30% of these volumes were physically connected to sustainable sourcing projects in Indonesia and Malaysia.
L’Oréal uses the deforestation risk evaluation tool devised by the NGO Global Forest Watch. All the Group’s direct suppliers are also assessed in line with the Sustainable Palm Index, which was established in 2016 and made available to all industry players in 2017.
To make further progress, in 2018 L’Oréal began developing a new tool to evaluate refineries and crushers (which extract the oil from the nuts) on the basis of their policies, procedures and reporting.
This tool was made available and shared publicly in 2019.
Soybean extract and its derivatives
In 2020, L’Oréal consumed 266 tonnes of soybean extract and 48 tonnes of soybean extract derivatives 100% of soybean used by L’Oréal and sourced from Latin America (266 tonnes per year, less than 0.001% of global production). 100% of the soybean extract used by L’Oréal and coming from Latin America is from a land project certified RTRS, Bio and Fair For Life, aimed at supporting 36 small soybean producers in Brazil and Paraguay, or from certified sources (IP – Identity Preserved Proterra). The soybean extract derivatives used by the Group (48 tonnes) come mostly from areas classed without risk of deforestation.
Wood-fibre based products
Among the materials used by L’Oréal for its packaging, 100% of paper used for product instructions and 100% of cardboard for product boxes come from sustainably managed forests (certified according to FSC or PEFC standards). 99,4% of the paper and cardboard used in POS materials is also certified. L’Oréal also uses other wood-based ingredients, such as cellulose derivatives and certain perfumery ingredients. A 2017 study conducted together with the NGO Rainforest Alliance enabled L’Oréal to lift the risk of deforestation from its principle supplies.
The Group’s ambition and achievements in fighting deforestation have been recognized. In 2020, for the fifth year running, L’Oréal was awarded an “A” score by CDP, the highest possible level of performance.
Elsewhere, in 2020, 49 of L’Oréal’s suppliers of paper, palm oil and soy took part in the third edition of the Forest Disclosure Project Supply Chain, a CDP programme.
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