GSK Consumer Healthcare (GSKCH) said it is partnering with two global packaging suppliers to launch fully recyclable toothpaste tubes across its specialist and science-based oral health brands including Sensodyne, parodontax, and Aquafresh.
The first partnership, with Albea, will see GSKCH switch its toothpaste tubes from aluminum barrier laminates to the patented Greenleaf laminate. The switchover will begin with Sensodyne Pronamel tubes, which will be available in fully recyclable alternatives in Europe this July. The second partnership, with EPL Global, will produce tubes in Platina laminate.
Both laminates have passed recycling-readiness tests set by the US-based Association of Plastic Recyclers and by Europe’s RecyClass, meaning the tubes will be recyclable and compatible with existing recycling processes. GSKCH expects the combined moves to see more than a billion toothpaste tubes a year become recyclable by 2025.
“We are fighting every day to help eradicate preventable oral health problems and to provide people with better, more sustainable oral care solutions that don’t compromise on quality,” said Sarah McDonald, vice president of sustainability at GSKCH.
“We have made the commitment that 100% of our product packaging will be recyclable or reusable, where quality and safety permits, by 2025. This is just one part of our ongoing sustainability journey, in which we are working to address the environmental and societal barriers to everyday health,” said McDonald.
According to the company, it has been instrumental in the growth of the oral care category globally, applying its trusted science to build awareness of preventable oral care conditions and drive better oral care habits. GSKCH said it is now collaborating with retailers and dental healthcare professionals to drive the growth of more sustainable options in oral care products across the world.
Earlier this year, GSKCH said, it launched its first sustainable toothbrush, Dr. Best, in Germany. Made from sustainably cultivated bamboo, with a biodegradable handle, the Dr. Best brush features plastic-free packaging made from recycled cardboard.
For Sensodyne and Aquafresh, GSKCH launched plastic-free toothbrush packaging featuring a cellulose gum window that enables shoppers to see the brush inside. The company also is now working to help reduce the environmental impact of dentistry as a founding partner of the World Dental Federation Sustainability in Dentistry Initiative.
GSKCH also said that its sustainability initiatives support its company-wide commitment to achieve a net zero impact on climate and a positive impact on nature by 2030.
“We are extremely proud to roll out our responsible Greenleaf tube packaging solution with an inspiring market leader such as GSK,” said Karl Graves, business director at Albea Tubes.
“Our commitment is to make 100% of our tubes recyclable by 2025 while offering innovative solutions with PCR, paper, and bio-based resins. Responsible packaging is now a must-have, and it requires close collaboration between a committed brand and a daring supplier,” Graves said.
“EPL is proud to be a critical partner towards GSK’s aspirations to have a net-zero impact on the environment by 2030. We know that sustainability will dictate innovation and be the focus on our operations, today and into the future,” said Parag Chaturvedi, vice president of operations at EPL Americas.
“We are committed to leading the pack in sustainable packaging and already are ahead on this journey with Platina, the first tube and cap combination to be recognized by the APR as fully sustainable and completely recyclable,” said Chaturvedi.
“We at EPL feel we have a significant role in the stewardship of the environment and are committed to conserving resources, reducing waste, and building awareness of environmental issues,” Chaturvedi said.