Without question, sustainability is one of the biggest drivers throughout today’s business landscape. Of the world’s top companies, more than 80% track their sustainability efforts. It’s impacting companies’ product development, operations, staffing and programming. The packaging design industry is no exception. Sustainably produced products and packaging are more top of mind among consumers than ever before.
We recently spoke with Kym Wellons, vice president of HR, legal, and sustainability for Silgan Dispensing, about our company’s philosophy around sustainability and how it informs every facet of our business.
Could you tell me about your role leading sustainability and how you help steer the company’s efforts in that area?
When I think about sustainability and my role in this space, I’m really more of a facilitator, a vision setter, and an aggregator of great ideas. A key focus has been broadening our perspective and programming on sustainability to cover our products, operations, and environmental impact, as well as our impact on our people and our communities. We set goals in each of these categories in a plan we call ‘Mission 2025’ so that we can focus on key initiatives and measure our progress.
What does sustainability mean for Silgan Dispensing?
That’s a good question. When I talk about sustainability to people who work here, I talk about it as part of our value system – because it is.
For us, sustainability is woven into nearly every aspect of how we run the business. Our focus on sustainability informs the products we’re going to make, which is influenced by consumer demand, customer initiatives, and our own values – what we believe are the solutions to move our industry forward in a sustainably-minded way. But for us, it is so much more.
In our manufacturing operations, we’ve set goals to make our plants more efficient, greener, and safer by reducing our energy and water usage, reducing material waste that would otherwise go to landfills, and implementing key health, safety and environmental performance practices and metrics.
Sustainability is core to our approach to people and our communities, guiding our employment policies and practices, our efforts to maintain a diverse and inclusive work environment and our focus on community service. It is part of how we partner with other companies and the suppliers we choose to do business with.
We haven’t reached all our goals, but we’re working every day to make progress. That’s the power of One Team in action.
How does sustainability fit into the company’s long-term goals?
I don’t know how you can talk today about business without talking about sustainability because it infuses everything you do. Our long-term business plan is purposely intertwined with sustainability, which is great because it’s not an afterthought; it’s embedded in the process of creating long-term business goals.
I think most people tend to gravitate to the products when it comes to sustainability, which is understandable because as consumers, that’s what we interact with. As a business, we have goals around the products we’re going to produce, and our vision of innovation and sustainability is ingrained in every part of that process.
But the truth is a lot more went into that product before it ended up on a store shelf or in a box left at a doorstep. Our approach is really about looking at the overall product lifecycle – from selecting raw materials; to how it is manufactured, packed and shipped; and to ultimately how it is used, reused and even recycled.
We’ve done a lot of work to create global policies that we all can align around and say, “This is how we define our approach to people. This is how we define our approach to the environment. This is how we define our approach to procurement.” By being transparent with our goals and commitments, we believe we can make real progress, in the short term and in the long term, and that makes us stronger as a business.
What is the company’s biggest opportunity concerning sustainability?
As a plastics company, we understand that people can have strong opinions about plastic. But we also think many people are beginning to think about it differently – that some plastics are better than others. We are really focused on more sustainable, more recyclable forms of resin and plastic.
We are continuously educating ourselves on what’s possible and challenging our suppliers to do the same. We then take that insight and transform it into products that are more sustainable with clear value propositions for our customers and consumers.
How does Silgan Dispensing measure sustainability?
We do it in a variety of ways.
Our customers help us measure our success. Many of our customers have sustainability goals and programs and are looking to us to help achieve those targets – providing another metric by which we can determine progress. We have external agencies, such as Ecovadis, CDP and ISO, who evaluate and rate our programs, letting us know where we are making progress and where we may have gaps and opportunities.
We have our company commitments in Mission 2025, which we are recognizing through cross-functional, global teams representing all areas of sustainability – product, process, people. Sustainability isn’t just a piece of paper on a wall. It’s a concept that gets talked about at the operational level when we’re goal setting for the year. It’s a topic that gets talked about in my HR team when we think about programming to ensure our people have growth, development and training. It’s in the conversations we have with our customers about our products and our product innovation.
The real key is bringing that all together and saying, “This is what we’re doing, how far we’ve come and where we’re going.”
The company recently received a Gold rating from EcoVadis. What does that rating mean for the Silgan Dispensing?
We’re extremely proud to have the Gold rating. Much of this success comes from channeling all the energy and enthusiasm around sustainability that exists in our people, our teams, and our manufacturing facilities, and translating that to who we are as a global company. We’ve created more programming, more global goals, and more collective ways of reporting what we’re doing. And when you do that, you start to see results.
How do you see sustainability evolving at Silgan Dispensing and within the industry over the next five, 10 years?
In our industry and at SDS, we’re going to see more and more innovation and creativity around sustainability, which is going to define our product base. When I talk to our innovation teams throughout the world, and I hear what they’re doing, it’s really amazing. Sustainability is going to define what we put into the marketplace. Everybody is going to want a sustainable solution, and we are going to be a leader in bringing them to market.
At SDS, I also believe we are on a journey to create the workforce of our future – powered by people with skill, knowledge and creative energy fueled by diversity of background, thought and experience in a work environment that invites conversation and collaboration. Sustainability in our production practices and creating positive impacts on our community and our planet will be embedded in all of our decisions because it will be good for business and good for us.
What excites you most of the company’s potential in this area?
Our people have a remarkable ability to partner, to collaborate. It’s in our DNA. And that’s really how sustainability moves forward. We are really good at working with our internal global teams, our suppliers and our customers to bring sustainable products to market, whether it is the product design or the way in which it is produced – or both. I think that’s where greatness happens – through the power of One Team.
Interview on the intersection of innovation and sustainability
Innovation and sustainability are arguably two of the biggest trends in business today. As prevalent as they are, what they mean can vary greatly. For Silgan Dispensing, innovation and sustainability are used to inform all aspects of the company – from products, to people and operations.
Silgan Dispensing expands number of ISCC PLUS certified manufacturing facilities
Two of Silgan Dispensing's plants in France, Le Tréport and Lacrost, have attained ISCC PLUS Certification. Last fall, its plants in Thomaston and Watertown Connecticut also achieved ISCC PLUS Certification. With the certification, Silgan Dispensing is able to trace the amount of renewable materials used throughout its manufacturing process.
Silgan Dispensing awarded EcoVadis’ Gold sustainability rating
Silgan Dispensing, a global leader in the design and manufacture of highly engineered pumps and sprayers for the beauty, fragrance, personal care, home, and healthcare markets, has received EcoVadis’ Gold sustainability rating for environmental and corporate social responsibility (CSR) performance.
Silgan acquires Unicep Packaging
Silgan, a leading supplier of sustainable rigid packaging solutions for consumer goods products, announced today that it has acquired Unicep Packaging. As a Specialty Contract Manufacturer and Developer solutions provider, this business develops, formulates, manufactures and sells precision dosing dispensing packaging solutions
Silgan Dispensing launches Pearl 2, the next generation airless System, at Luxe Pack Monaco 2021
Silgan Dispensing, a global leader in design and manufacture of highly engineered pumps and sprayers in the beauty, fragrance, personal care, home, and healthcare markets, is premiering Pearl 2, the next generation of its airless systems. This new generation also offers materials designed for recyclability, a robust e-commerce design, and broader technical capabilities.
Two Silgan Dispensing manufacturing sites receive ISCC PLUS certification
Silgan Dispensing announces that two of its plants in Connecticut, Thomaston and Watertown, have attained ISCC PLUS Certification, the industry’s leading certification for the Mass Balance protocol, which enables tracking of recycled or bio-based material in the production of resin.
Why standardization is key to driving sustainability across the packaging industry
Silgan Dispensing is a member of Cetie, and several members of our team are involved with its various working groups, including one that focuses on screw necks or glass bottles: the Flaconnage Geometry Group. We recently talked with Juan Albi, project team leader for Silgan Dispensing’s beauty and personal care, and Sandy Gregory, director of fragrance marketing, to share about our company’s relationship with Cetie and how new standards are driving sustainability across the industry.
Dispensers that perform flawlessly, differentiate on shelf and reduce impact on the environment
At Silgan Dispensing, we leverage our expertise to create dispensing solutions that make a difference for our customers, and theirs. With consumers more environmentally conscious than ever before, making a difference means creating dispensers that not only perform flawlessly and differentiate on the shelf, but also reduce impact on the environment.
Silgan Dispensing launches new premium, noiseless sprayer – Sinfonia Elegance
Silgan Dispensing announces the launch of its newest spray, Sinfonia Elegance. Sinfonia Elegance provides the same versatility as Silgan Dispensing’s Sinfonia Spray in a new noiseless version and a softer force-to-actuate, making it an ideal solution for brands that do not want to compromise on consumer experience.
Dior's Sauvage with Silgan dispensing pump is now refillable
The fragrance industry just got a little more sustainable. Best-selling mens fragrance Christian Dior’s Sauvage is now refillable. Dior needed a fragrance pump that would last for years so they trusted Silgan Dispensing to supply one that will continue working, refill after refill.
Silgan Dispensing Melodie Pump selected for Jimmy Choo Fragrance
Silgan Dispending is honored to have worked with Interparfums to create a highly customized actuator on our Melodie pump for the newest Jimmy Choo fragrance for women: I Want Choo. This rose colored pefume looks elegant in it's luxurious bottle.
How has the pandemic impacted consumers' use and relationship with fragrances?
The impact scent can have on a mood and overall sense of wellbeing is nearly impossible to overstate. One fragrance can elicit feelings of coziness and comfort, while another can give a person a sense of luxury and distinction. Given the seemingly endless variations of fragrances and personal uses, it’s no surprise the fragrance market has seen such steady profitability in recent years – at least, prior to COVID-19.
Silgan Dispensing’s first foam solution featured in Bondi Sands’ newly launched self-tanning line, Pure
Silgan Dispensing has partnered with Bondi Sands on its newly launched self-tanning range, Pure. Bondi Sands’ ‘Pure Self Tan Foaming Water’ utilizes Silgan Dispensing’s EZ’R foamer, which features a first-to-market foam application that is 100% recyclable in polypropylene (PP) streams and made entirely from plastic components.
Silgan Dispensing’s Mini NEA line provides beauty brands with high-demand airless and atmospheric sample solutions
Silgan Dispensing is launching its Mini NEA line, available in airless and atmospheric versions, offering convenient and compact solutions for uses such as holiday samples, gift sets, travel sets and in-store testers. Based on the trusted, next-generation NEA platform, this pack provides an excellent evacuation rate and ultra-smooth actuation.
A look at consumer shift in attitude toward conscious beauty
As is the case with any trend, consumers’ interest in natural products has shifted in several key ways that brands in this space must recognize. “Natural” alone doesn’t carry the weight it used to, and in some cases, can be more a liability than a differentiator. Fortunately, there are several strategies brands can employ to deliver products aligned with their customers’ need.
Silgan Dispensing’s acquisition of Albéa Dispensing expands the foundation for our growth strategy
Kevin Clark, President of Silgan Dispensing Systems explains how Silgan's recent acquisition of Albéa's global dispensing business is a transformative step forward on the company's mission to be the preferred partner to its customers.
Silgan acquires Albéa’s Dispensing Systems, Metal and Brazil businesses
With the acquisition of Albéa’s Global Dispensing Systems business, which includes its Metal (Covit Europe & US) and Brazil industrial clusters, Silgan Dispensing expands its range of lotion and fragrance pumps for the beauty, cosmetic, and fragrance markets, while also adding a market-leading portfolio of foaming and fragrance and beauty sampler/mini product solutions. Silgan also gains the experienced team of Albea employees previously focused on those product lines.
e-Commerce: The new rules of packaging and dispensing design
What effect though has the rise in e-commerce had on product development – specifically packaging and dispensing design? The e-commerce model poses several important considerations for brands from a product design perspective. Damaged product, specifically its packaging, is a common reason people return online orders. Designing products that both are appealing online and durable enough to arrive intact is key.
Silgan Dispensing adds to noteworthy home and garden portfolio with latest solution, BOS Enhanced
Silgan Dispensing, a global leader in the design, development and distribution of highly engineered pumps and sprayers in the home, health and beauty markets, launches its newest solution, BOS Enhanced, a sustained duration sprayer with an improved performance and updated design aesthetics for applications in lawn, garden and beyond.
Silgan Dispensing highlights solutions to deliver a better healthcare dispensing experience
Silgan Dispensing, a global leader in the design, development, and distribution of highly engineered pumps and sprayers in the healthcare, home and personal care markets, will share insights and solutions aimed at delivering a better dispensing experience for patients and caregivers, highlighting solutions in ophthalmic, nasal, topical, wound and animal care.
Silgan to acquire Albea’s dispensing business for $900 million
Silgan a leading supplier of rigid packaging for consumer goods products, has announced that it has signed a binding offer to acquire Albea’s dispensing business for $900 million. The proposed acquisition will further broaden the closures franchise.
The rising pet care market and its impact on packaging
As consumers spend more on pet care in unprecedented amounts, they’re demanding higher quality products. Packaging plays a vital role in helping brands meet those higher standards and delivering on the high-end experience consumers expect for their pets.
Silgan Dispensing's TS800 trigger sprayer awarded 'Made for Recycling' certificate by Interseroh, a German recycling and waste management firm; certification complies with new German Packaging Law
Silgan Dispensing has announced that its industry-leading TS800® trigger sprayer has been awarded a “Made for Recycling” certificate by Interseroh, a German recycling and waste management firm.
Silgan Dispensing's diverse health care portfolio meets array of patient needs
Silgan Dispensing’s portfolio addresses a number of needs across the health care spectrum, particularly end markets like ophthalmic, animal health and wound care. The company will share insights and solutions for a wide range of patient health needs at CPhI 2019.
Silgan Dispensing introduces expanded PCR portfolio
Silgan Dispensing has released three additional solutions to its suite of post-consumer recycled products and introduced an industry-leading color library of more than 80 options. PCR offers exciting new possibilities to reduce waste and energy use while still achieving the highest levels of performance.
Luxe Pack exhibitors strike balance between eco and prestige – Working with PCR
In January, Silgan Dispensing introduced its first wave of PCR plastic products; its approach was to make certain components in its dispensers from 100% recycled material, while keeping those parts requiring high tolerance in virgin plastic. At Luxe Pack Monaco, the company launched further options.
- Jo Webb
- Created 04 Jan 2022
- Modified 07 Jan 2022
- Hits 1116