Body Shop not quite there yet on green goals

Cosmetics brand The Body Shop has admitted progress towards several sustainability targets was slower than expected in 2017 due to a variety of reasons, including its acquisition by Natura.


The Body Shop

In its Enrich Not Exploit 2017 report, the company said four of its 14 goals had not been met last year as it outlined its performance according to its five-year sustainability plan.

“We made notable progress across many areas, including the continued expansion of our Community Trade programme, global support for our award winning Forever Against Animal Testing campaign and biodiversity achievements through our World Bio-Bridges Mission. We also continued to improve the environmental impact of our products,” said Christopher Davis, international director of corporate responsivity and campaigns in the report.

“However, not everything has gone to plan,” he added, referring to its targets around volunteering, sustainable packaging innovations, reduced energy consumption and transitioning to renewable energy.

The company wanted to reach 100,000 hours of volunteering work by employees but reported just 75,521 as a result of busy workloads due “the changes that occurred across the company” during the year.

Its target to deliver three new sustainable packaging innovations failed after “some promising concepts did not meet standards during tests”, while the proportion of stores using renewable or carbon balance energy remained at 23% - short of its 2017 objective of 40%.

It had also planned to reduce the energy use in stores by 10%, but managed to consume just 3% less energy, failing to meet its goal and match the 5% reduction it made in 2016.

Despite all this, The Body Shop did advance towards the majority of its goals, including protecting 41 million square metres of habitat, making 55% of product packaging fossil fuel-free, and ensuring 70% of its ingredients are traceable and sustainable.

The Body Shop is “determined” to become the world’s most ethical and sustainable business. It operates 3,000 stores in 66 countries and employs over 22,000 people.

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