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Where Does Sustainability Stand Amid COVID-19?

Posted 07/02/2020 by Julia Li, Global Marketing Manager, Hygiene and Nonwovens

The pandemic has forced manufacturers to put an increased focus on safety. But where has that left other critical areas, such as sustainability? Can we have both in the time of COVID-19? Speakers from across the hygiene and nonwovens industry recently addressed the impact of the pandemic on sustainability as part of the Safety Versus Sustainability webinar, led by Nonwovens Industry (NWI) and co-sponsored by H.B. Fuller.  

During the webinar, Ameara Mansour, our director of global new product development, discussed the numerous sustainability claims that are observed in the nonwovens industry. She then polled the audience on various aspects of sustainability, including where the hygiene industry currently prioritizes sustainable product development, what challenges companies face in moving product innovations forward, and what the biggest drivers are for wider adoption of sustainable hygiene products. 

“It was good to hear that while COVID-19 is the lead issue that manufacturers face today, that many are concurrently moving ahead with sustainable product development,” said Mansour.

View Polling Results

Is the definition of sustainability changing due to COVID-19?

Heidi Beatty, founder and principal of Crown Abbey, discussed whether the definition of sustainability is changing due to COVID-19. According to Beatty, the definition was already changing before the pandemic. There is an opportunity to meet the needs of consumers and be sustainable by selecting the best technologies and considering the whole lifecycle of the product. What is being discussed now is how we will move forward post-COVID-19 by redesigning products to fit the evolving needs of consumers.

Sustainable Hygiene Solutions

At H.B. Fuller, we are ready to bring innovative ideas to help hygiene manufacturers operate in a more sustainable way. We have launched a new section on our website to share our sustainable hygiene solutions, including:

  • Adhesives for bonding natural substrates
  • Digitization and automation
  • Core adhesives that enable thinner diaper design
  • Low temperature adhesives
  • Alternative eco-conscious packaging
  • Sustainable hot melt adhesives

Explore Our Sustainable Hygiene Solutions

Enhancing Packaging Sustainability 

The webinar concluded with Meghan Stasz, vice president of packaging and sustainability for the Consumer Brands Association (CBA), who provided a consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry perspective on enhancing packaging sustainability. CBA has focused on recycling and the recycling system in the U.S. as it is the underpinning of sustainable packaging. You can learn about CBA’s recycling policy platform by visiting the association’s website.

At H.B. Fuller, we strive to meet the needs of the present generation without compromising future generations through our sustainable packing solutions. Click here to learn about sustainable packaging solutions offered by H.B. Fuller and how thoughtful packaging design is critical to further our path to a circular economy model.

So, can we have safety and sustainability in the time of COVID-19? We believe we can. We look forward to providing innovative solutions for the next generation of safe, sustainable products. Contact us for more information on this webinar or to connect with an H.B. Fuller representative.

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