Unilever China wins Sustainable Business Award

By Natasha Spencer

- Last updated on GMT

Unilever China wins Sustainable Business Award

Related tags Sustainability

Unilever China won the Sustainable Business Award for the second time at the recent British Business Awards.

In the last six years, Unilever has been a finalist in the Sustainable Business Award category every time and won the Sustainable Business Award in both 2012 and 2016.

The Sustainable Business award is presented to those companies that focus on creating and maintaining sustainable organisations in China.  

Unilever China’s strong sustainability message is integral to its brand identity and company objectives.

It achieves sustainability through focusing on three key aims: creating a better future for the planet, a better future for children and a better future for farmers. It promotes these values in a bid to inspire consumers to make daily decisions that support sustainability.

Additionally, Unilever China has used its leading fast moving consumer goods status to communicate the importance of sustainability around the world. As such, it has formed several global partnerships that focus on: improving the value chain livelihoods,achieving transformational change and collaborating with others.

Sustainable objectives

With over 400 brands in over 190 countries, Unilever’s priority remains achieving both growth and sustainability, and this dual focus has not been to the brand’s detriment. “In fact, in our experience sustainability drives growth,”​ said Marina Wu, Communication Director, Unilever China’s Strategic.

APAC cosmetics and personal care consumers demand sustainable products that seek to eradicate the negative impact on the environment. Therefore, sustainable methods such as conserving water and energy, and the use of natural and organic ingredients enhance this trend and Unilever China’s efforts.

In 2010, Unilever unveiled its global Unilever Sustainable Living Plan (USLP), which identified three platforms to deliver its sustainability agenda. Alongside company growth, it has strategic plans in place to enhance livelihoods, improve health and wellbeing and reduce environmental impact.

Since 2006, Unilever China has “achieved significant reduction in CO2, water and waste across China factories by 42%, 35% and 80% per production tonne respectively”,​ added Wu.

“We have found that once you start looking at product development, sourcing and manufacturing through a sustainability lens, it opens up great opportunities for innovation and cost reduction,”​ Wu went on to say.

British Business Awards

The British Business Awards, first established in 2008, are hosted by the British Chamber of Commerce Shanghai and strive to recognise and encourage the importance of success in British and Chinese business.

According to the criteria of the Award, in deciding their winner, judges considered evidence of an organisation that has a clearly identified vision and set of values.

The winning company must also have successfully embedded its sustainable business strategy and practices across its operations in China and should have promoted economic prosperity, improved environmental quality and social equity as well as delivered improved shareholder performance.

In an interview with The British Business Awards, Unilever China said that as a result of “ the global economy...still recovering from the recent global economic turmoil, [a] new business model of sustainable growth is demanding.”

“ UK businesses in China are increasingly taking a leadership role in creating a more sustainable world – environmentally, economically and socially, especially in such a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous market.”

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