ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J. — Unilever is looking for some more equality in recycling.
The consumer products giant is reprising “Rinse.Recycle.Reimagine.,” a campaign that calls on Americans to reassess their recycling habits and treat their Unilever bathroom empties — such as Simple, Dove, Suave and other products – like their kitchen counterparts. The company noted that only 14% of Americans recycle their bathroom bottles, while more than half of U.S. households recycle their kitchen items, such as beverage containers.
“When it comes to household recycling, we want people to realize that how they dispose of empty bottles in the bathroom is just as important as how they dispose of empty bottles in the kitchen. We are inviting consumers to #RethinkRecycling by putting their empty bathroom bottles in the bin just as often as their kitchen empties, because if we each make small changes, we can create a brighter future for all,” stated Julie Zaniewski, packaging sustainability manager at Unilever.
The campaign will feature engaging, socially-driven content aimed at educating Americans on how empty bath and beauty bottles should be recycled as often as their kitchen counterparts. Using attention-grabbing imagery, Unilever bottles will literally take a stand and take up picket signs to demand equality in recycling, the company said.
Unilever will also be asking Americans to vote for what recycled plastics can become. To showcase the things bath and beauty bottles can become when they are recycled, Unilever will be creating coats for kids, school supplies or playgrounds from recycled plastics in partnership with Keep America Beautiful.
And to help spread the word to rethink recycling, Unilever is rallying influential voices to stand up for “forgotten” bathroom bottles, led by actress, producer, best-selling author Candace Cameron Bure, the co-host of “The View.”
The program is part of Unilever’s brightFuture initiative in support of the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan (USLP), which aims to increase the company’s positive social impact while reducing its environmental impact. Specifically, while many of Unilever’s bath and beauty products are packaged in recycled material, the company has set a goal to boost the recycled material content in its packaging to maximum possible levels by 2020.
“As a company that touches 2 billion people a day with our products, our size alone provides the opportunity to bring about transformational change,” commented Zaniewski. “We’re working across our whole value chain — from the sourcing of raw materials to our factories and the way consumers use our products — so that we can make a bigger difference on the issues that matter most, like recycling and the environment. We’ve come a long way, but we have more work to do.”
The Rinse.Recycle.Reimagine. program began as an extension of Unilever’s national sponsorship of the “I Want To Be Recycled” public service campaign, created by Keep America Beautiful and the Ad Council. Since its July 2013 launch, the campaign has received more than $123 million in donated media support, attracted more than 3.2 million website visitors, and been seen or heard by nearly 40% of the U.S. population, the company said.