Oral care market leader Colgate-Palmolive (CP) is launching recyclable toothpaste tubes in India. This makes CP the first oral care brand to launch such an initiative at scale.
The technology is first being rolled out on Colgate’s Active Salt and Colgate Vedshakti variants. In future, these brands will only be manufactured in recyclable materials. Products in the new recyclable tubes have already been dispatched across select markets and will be nationally available across outlets by September. This will be followed with its other brands in the portfolio.
Colgate-Palmolive India MD Ram Raghavan said, “Our desire to reimagine a healthier future for the people we serve and for our planet remains our number one priority. With this category-leading initiative, along with our consumers and our nation, our planet will also have a future to smile about. We hope that all toothpaste manufacturers will meet recycling standards for their tubes in order to maximise the positive impact it can have on all of us.”
This initiative is in partnership with EPL. Colgate is also sharing its recyclable technology with others to achieve a circular economy. Traditionally, toothpastes come in tubes that are made from plastic and aluminium, which is difficult to recycle. In the Rs 15,000-crore oral care segment, Colgate leads with a share of around 53%.
In May this year, Unilever had announced plans to convert its entire global toothpaste portfolio to recyclable tubes by 2025. The plan is to roll it out in India later this year. In India, Unilever competes with CP in oral care, although it is a distant No. 2. A Hindustan Unilever spokesperson said, “The work on the launch of recyclable tubes for our toothpaste brands in India is currently underway.”
Experts believe as consumer awareness about the environment grows, sustainable practices adopted by a brand will determine its competitive edge over others. In India, given that trash segregation at consumer level is at a very nascent stage, industries currently rely largely on trash separations at dumping grounds.
Similar to India, CP has globally launched the recyclable tubes version in some of its popular brands in parts of North and Latin America, Europe, Asia and Australia. All sub-brands in any country will be completely replaced by recyclable tubes by 2025.